Santa Fe, New Mexico, considers another move to revive city's homebuilding, looks at waiving impact fees for developers through 2013, giving up US$400,000 in revenue

LOS ANGELES , November 3, 2011 () – In a move aimed at stimulating homebuilding in the city, Santa Fe, New Mexico, proposes to temporarily waive impact fees on new developments, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported Nov. 1.

The proposal is intended to provide jobs by kick-starting already planned but stalled housing projects, said Land Use Director Matthew O'Reilly. It would not affect fees for commercial construction.

The city would lose about US$400,000 in estimated impact fees but would collect neither taxes nor fees without homebuilding projects, wrote O'Reilly in a memo.

The proposal is scheduled for its first public hearing Thursday before the city Planning Commission.

JoAnne Vigil Coppler, with the government affairs committee of the Santa Fe Association of Realtors, said the group favors the rule change. More than 1,700 homes are on the market in the area but the number is declining, said Coppler.

However, the proposal's two-year waiver would not help builders facing a long review process, she added.

Santa Fe has recently changed a number of regulations as it aims to revive a weak construction industry, such as halving to 15% the former 30% of affordable housing required in each development, until 2013.

The city also waived time limits on master plans for development, which formerly gave developers just five years from plan approval to begin construction.

The primary source of this article is The New Mexican, Santa Fe, New Mexico, on Nov. 1, 2011.

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