Development charges set to increase in Erin

ERIN – Development charges are set to rise significantly in Erin if a proposed increase is passed by town council.

At its meeting on Sept. 15, council heard a presentation by Gary Scandlan, director and managing partner of the economic consulting firm Watson & Associates.

The firm was hired by the town to update its development charges bylaw now that the water supply study is complete, and calculations have been made on the wastewater treatment plant.

The presentation was the mandated public meeting, although Mayor Alan Alls said no members of the public had registered.

Since the province passed Bill 108, there are also some policy changes that have to be incorporated into the bylaw, Scandlan said.

Those changes are centre on parkland dedication and how the land must be prepared for the town to build a park. There were also changes to how rental and non-profits can pay their development charges (DCs).

Generally speaking, the new legislation allows for instalment payments over a longer amount of time: five years for rentals and 20 years for non-profits.

Scandlan reminded council that DCs are intended to recover growth costs.

Developers already pay for the internal roads, streetlights, and sewers within their developments.

DCs cover growth costs outside the subdivision, such as watermains and the wastewater treatment plant.

The Town of Erin Urban Centre Water Servicing Schedule B Class EA, presented to council in February, identified new water supply and connection upgrades in the villages of Erin and Hillsburgh with a cost of $26.3 million.

The Urban Centre Wastewater Servicing Class EA, completed Aug. 21, identified wastewater infrastructure costs at $67.2 million for the wastewater treatment plant and $20.3 million for the wastewater collection system.

The updated DCs will include growth-related transportation services, fire protection, parks and recreation, and administration studies as before, plus these water and wastewater costs.

For a single detached residential dwelling, that adds an extra $19,143 to the DC calculation, making the new total $36,401.

For non-residential space, the updated DCs will add $6.46 per square foot to the calculation, for a total $13.98 per square foot.

That puts Erin in spot number four for residential and commercial DCs, and number three for industrial DCs, in a list of 12 comparator municipalities.

The bylaw will come to council for a vote on Oct. 20. The public has until then to comment.