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Whiteside points to Barrie model for 'new growth financing tools' idea

Posted June 3, 2014

Ward 3 councillor Paul Whiteside suggested last night the Town investigate what the City of Barrie has come up with to help pay for future infrastructure upgrades that accompany new growth to determine whether it could be implemented in New Tecumseth.

Barrie has a struck a deal with developers who will pay a $4,500 per-unit surcharge. This is in addition to development charges, which cover 90 per cent of an eligible project, leaving a 10 per cent shortfall. DCs, including water and wastewater, are $38,409 per single and semi-detached unit in New Tecumseth.

Barrie is forecasting about $1.8 billion in new infrastructure over the next 20 years, of that $1.2 billion is overed by DCs. The $4,500 surcharge is estimated to raise $100 million.

"As we all know, we have significant capital expenditures that we've already undertaken, and there will be others that will have to be financed," said Mr. Whiteside. "It does concern me."

"Are you suggesting we add another $4,500 to our current DCs?" asked Ward 6 councillor Richard Norcross.

"No," replied Mr. Whiteside, "it's not an addition to the DCs. It's a supplemental charge that somehow they're receiving from the development community. I'd just like staff to look at the options they (Barrie) have been able to utilize to assist in funding these capital expenditures."

In a published report last week, Barrie mayor Jeff Lehman conceded the surcharge will be passed along to the purchaser. "Some of this will end up in the price of new homes. The flip side is if we don't receive it from there, we have to get it from existing taxpayers, which is not fair."

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