The State Allocation Board, at its January 22, 2014 meeting, approved an increase in “level 1” developer fees from $3.20 to $3.36 per square foot on new residential development and residential additions of over 500 square feet, and from $0.51 to $0.54 per square foot on new commercial and industrial development.
School districts may implement these higher fees immediately provided that they have an appropriate fee justification report in place. Your existing justification report may be adequate or may need to be updated. Implementing the higher fees requires passing a resolution, preceded by publishing a notice twice in a 10-day period, posting the notice, and mailing the notice to anyone who has specifically requested notice. The higher fees go into effect 60 days after the resolution is passed, unless urgency resolutions are used to reduce the waiting period. The county and any cities having jurisdiction in your district should be notified of the increase so that they have current information for building permit applicants.
Non-unified districts should adjust their allocation agreement for sharing the total fee amounts.
As always, fee revenues are to be placed in an account to be used for facilities construction and modernization, as well as costs of justifying and collecting the fees. Those districts that have the higher “level 2” fees on new residential development should still increase their level 1 fees to capture revenues from projects not subject to level 2 fees.
If you have any questions concerning developer fees, justification reports, or the process to increase fees, please contact our office.
The State Board of Education on January 15, 2014 issued new regulations to implement S.B. 1404 from 2012, authorizing school districts to impose Civic Center Act user fees that include costs of maintenance, repair, restoration, and refurbishment of school facilities or grounds in proportion to their use. These regulations are at Title 5, California Code of Regulations, sections 14037-14042.
The regulations, which expire January 1, 2020, are to be used to determine the specific allowable costs and the proportionate share of those costs that can be charged. The fees calculated by this method are the maximum amount that a district is authorized to charge, and it should be noted that districts may elect to charge lower fees based on the type or category of applicant, such as tax-exempt entities, or to waive fees entirely.
When electing to charge fees pursuant to the Civic Center Act, the governing board must adopt a fee schedule that includes the hourly fee for each specific facility and grounds (similar or “like” facilities or grounds can be grouped together). Districts may charge for “capital direct costs” only, “operational direct costs” only, or both capital and operational direct costs.
“Capital direct costs” are determined by: (a) determining the useful life of the facility; (b) estimating the expected cost to repair, restore, refurbish or replace the facility, as applicable, at the end of the useful life; and (c) dividing that cost by the number of years of useful life to determine an annual cost. “Operational direct costs” are determined by:
(a) determining the annual cost of salaries and benefits for all employee labor or contract services required to operate, clean and maintain the facility or grounds, including janitorial, security, and set up and tear down, as required;
(b) the annual cost of supplies, including equipment, required to operate and maintain the facility or grounds;
(c) the annual cost of utilities required to operate the facility or grounds; and
(d) the prorated portion of annual salaries and benefits for the time of school employees associated with administering these user fees.
The “proportionate share” of the “capital direct costs” or “operational direct costs” that can be charged to a user is determined by dividing the estimated annual hours that a facility or grounds is expected to be used by applicants by the estimated annual hours that a facility or grounds is available for use by anyone, including the district.
Funds that are collected as “capital direct costs” are required to be deposited in a special fund used only for capital maintenance, repair, restoration, and refurbishment.
If you have any questions regarding the Civic Center Act or civic center user fees, please contact our office.