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House Bill 852 Restricts How Municipalities Set Community Development Fees

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Sulphur Springs, like all Texas municipalities, will no longer be able to base permit and inspection fees for residential dwellings on the cost of the project, state officials determined recently.

Ordinance 2749, presented to Sulphur Springs City Council Tuesday evening, would amend Sulphur Springs’ fee schedule for community development so that the city will be in compliance with House Bill 852, which relates to information a municipality may consider in determining the amount of certain building permit and inspection fees.

HB 852 prohibits municipalities from using the value of the dwelling and the cost of constructing or improving the dwelling to determine building permit or inspection fee in connection with construction or improvement of a residential dwelling. Municipalities also are barred from requiring information related to the cost or value of construction or improvement of the dwelling when setting the costs for a building permit.

“Due to these recent changes, staff ha review our fee schedule. We have made the necessary changes to either make the fees based on square footage or a flat fee. So, for the most part our ordinance was in compliance, except for the trades; we decided to go with a flat fee. For residential remodel we want to go with square foot,” Sulphur Springs Community Development Director Tory Niewiadomski told the council.

The proposed ordinance was given approval on first reading, and will be presented again at a later meeting for final approval.

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Author: Faith Huffman

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