By Jill Ralph. In Pasco County, Fla., home builders may get the break they've been waiting for. In Pasco County, Fla., home buyers may get a not-so-welcome increase on their property tax bills.
At issue is $6,952 in impact fees currently being charged to builders to pay for roads, water and sewer lines, schools, parks, and libraries. Builders pay the fees before they construct the house and then add it into the cost of the house. But now, through lobbying from the building industry, Pasco County officials are mulling the abolition of upfront fees and the adoption of capacity assessment units.
Builders and developers say they are in favor of the switch. They won't have to front as much money, which can amount to millions of dollars, when they pull permits to build homes. County officials say the motivation behind the measure is to allow Pasco to borrow money based on anticipated impact fee collections instead of gradually paying for infrastructure as impact fees are collected. If the pilot program succeeds, capacity assessment units could replace the remaining impact fees. County attorney Robert Sumner said Pasco County plans to test the use of assessments with road impact fees ($2,166 per home).