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Current Issues in Development Impact Fees

OnDemand Webinar (85 minutes)

Gain tips on how to distinguish between fees that have been upheld and those which have been found deficient in one way or another.The establishment and imposition of reasonable, legally-valid, development impact fees and similar exactions as conditions of development approval remains one of the most contentious and fiscally-significant subjects of concern for public policy-makers, planners, governmental agencies and private developers and property owners (as well as for prospective home buyers and tenants). In light of increasing budgetary constraints (exacerbated by the recent pandemic) many state and local agencies increasingly turn to fees as a critical source of funding for needed public infrastructure and facilities. At the same time, however, there is widespread recognition that such fees and exactions are a major factor adversely impacting the affordability of housing. Legislatures and courts have imposed new constraints on the use of development fees. This topic will provide insights as to how to try to navigate these turbulent waters, including practical suggestions and guidance based on recent court decisions, distinguishing between fees that have been upheld and those which have been found deficient in one way or another.


David P. Lanferman, Rutan & Tucker, LLP


Overview of Current Issues and Developments in the Laws Regarding Impact Fees, Especially Since 2010

• Fees and Exactions Remain a Major Source of Controversy

• There Are More Kinds of Fees in Use, and the Amounts Charged as Fees Continue to Increase

• Some New Legislative and Judicial Constraints on Development Fees

Development Fees and Exactions Remain a Major Source of Controversy, and Conflict, in the Arenas of Land Use, Development - Especially Housing Development, and Public Infrastructure Financing

Trent Meredith v. City of Oxnard (1988)

• Recent Survey of Home Builders

• Report by the California Dept. of Housing and Community Development (2019)

Legislative and Judicial Pushback and Constraints on Development Fees

• Constitutional Limitations on Monetary Exactions - Koontz v. St. John's River Water Mgt. Dist. (2013); Legislative vs. Quasi-Judicial Distinction?

• California Constitution - Prop 26 and Prop 218; City of San Buenaventura v. United Water Cons. Dist. (2017)

• Statutory Constraints - The Mitigation Fee Act; Boatworks v. City of Alameda (2019); HBA v. Lemoore (2010)

- Traffic Impact Fees (Gov Code 66005.1);

- Affordable Housing (SB-330)

• School Facility Fees

• Recent Case Law on Development Fees

Appropriate Use of, and Accounting for, Fees Collected - Gov. Code §§66001, 66006; Walker v. San Clemente (2015)

Anticipated New Issues Involving Development Fees