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Real Estate News: Battle between Halton Region and homebuildes over development charges settles… for now

November 27, 2009

A long and bitter battle fought between Halton Region and major homebuilders in the residential development industry has been settled, for the moment.

 Regional council last week approved, with the support of a development industry lobbying group, a staff recommendation to continue collecting a disputed $7,888 per-house charge from residential developers in north Oakville and Milton with the money to be used to pay for roads and water and wastewater infrastructure.

 However, those developers will now be able to recoup the full amount back from the Region, at no interest, once the municipality collects the same charge from future developers.

The unusual agreement results from a change in the Provincial law under which Halton will collect the charge.

 What that means is the homebuilders will be able to recover the full $7,888 from fees that will be paid by future residential developers in Halton, with no risk to the taxpayer, regional staff told council. When the charge was under the Municipal Act, the same builders were only going to be able to get back just over 40 per cent of their money.

 “Ultimately, Halton has the opportunity now to generate the revenue they need to move forward on their capital (construction) program and the industry has the opportunity to find those contributions become recoverable in future development charges,” Joe Vaccaro, vice-president of policy and government relations for the Building Industry and Land Development (BILD) association, said in a recent interview.

Read the full article “Battle between Region and homebuilders alleviated, for now” by Tim Foran from today’s Oakville Beaver

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