Controversial Plan Goes Before Air Board


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(Modesto, CA)
Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District wants to assess fees for developments that aren't environmentally friendly. For example builders can avoid the fees by constructing homes in subdivisions that have bicycle paths connected to shopping areas.
Tom Jordan of the Control District says the fee would vary depending on the structure, but could run into hundreds of dollars for an average home.

"If a project didn't do any on-site mitigation they would have approximately a seven hundred dollar fee this year per household."
     
Developers don't like the proposal. Bob Keenan, a spokesman for a Central Valley builder's association says the added construction costs or fees would drive up the price of homes and commercial projects.

"That's going to discourage somebody from building it. If they do build it, the costs of the goods and services are going to passed on to the consumer."
The fee proposal will be considered by the district's governing board.