Council voted 10-5 (Chabot, McLean, Sharpe, Wyness, and I opposed) last week to increase the off-site levy rate, and it comes into effect on March 1. Levies are what a developer must pay. This levy is there to pay for water and wastewater pipes, roads, interchanges, pathways, bikeways, emergency response stations, transit busses, police stations, recreation centers, libraries, water and wastewater treatment plants. Basically it pays for what you expect to see in a community.
As with any increase in costs, they are moved down to the end consumer. So if you are buying a brand new house, you will see a larger cost. As of now, all the levies cost $22,600.00 per home, and with the increase it will add another $1,700.00 to the end bill.
For more information on levies, what they are, and the bylaw, click here.
What are they:
Off-site levies fund the infrastructure that we use every day in new communities. In Calgary, an off-site levy is a development charge paid by developers. The greenfield is the area on the edges of Calgary that are not developed yet.
New communities have impacts on infrastructure outside of the community. This can include more pressure on major roads or the sewage treatment system. Developers pay off-site levies to help share the costs of the off-site impacts from growth.
Calgary’s off-site levies help pay for infrastructure that supports growth and development. The Municipal Government Act and the Off-site Levies Bylaw outline what infrastructure the levy pays for. Some examples of the types of infrastructure are:
- water and wastewater pipes
- transportation (roads, interchanges, pathways, bikeways, etc.)
- stormwater pipes
- emergency response stations
- transit buses
- police stations
- recreation centres
- water and wastewater
The City and developers each pay for a part of off-site infrastructure in new communities. This helps pay for new infrastructure needed to build vibrant communities. It also provides the developer with the infrastructure needed to build a community.
The developer part of the off-site levy benefits new growth. The City pays for the part of the infrastructure that benefits existing residents and the region.
The City uses a variety of funding sources to pay for off-site infrastructure. This can include taxes, utility rates, Provincial and Federal government funding and grants.
The off-site levies support:
- Providing Calgarians with the option to live in vibrant communities.
- Providing Calgarians with communities that meet their basic needs.
- Building the right infrastructure in the right place at the right time.
- Achieving City policies and strategies for growth (Municipal Development Plan/Calgary Transportation Plan, etc.).