Chapter 4.56


4.56.010    Purpose.

4.56.020    Definitions.

4.56.030    Fees—Imposition and application.

4.56.040    Fees to be set by resolution.

4.56.050    Payment of fees.

4.56.060    Protests.

4.56.070    Exemptions.

4.56.080    Credits and reimbursement.

4.56.090    Disposition and use of fees.

4.56.100    Refunds.

4.56.010 Purpose.

The council declares that the fees required to be paid by this chapter are established for the purpose of protecting the public health, safety and general welfare, and implementing the policies of the general plan, by providing adequate public facilities to support orderly development. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.020 Definitions.

Unless otherwise required by the context, the following definitions shall govern the construction of this chapter:

“Commercial development” means the development or use of land for any retail, office, service commercial or other business purpose.

“Council” means the city council of the city of San Luis Obispo.

“Development” or “development project” means any project undertaken for the purpose of development, and includes a project involving the issuance of a permit for construction or reconstruction, but not a permit to operate. Development or development project shall include: (1) approvals of land divisions pursuant to Title 16, including approval of lot line adjustments, certificates of compliance, parcel maps, tract maps and condominium conversions; (2) land use approvals pursuant to Title 17, including rezonings or the approval of development plans, site plans, minor use permits, variances, but excepting approval of San Luis Obispo general plan/land use ordinance amendments; (3) for the issuance of any occupancy permit or final building inspection; and (4) all other approvals of real property development, which approvals are subject to the jurisdiction of the city of San Luis Obispo and which approvals are subject to the exercise of the discretion of the city council, planning commission, or community development director. For purposes of this chapter, new development includes any change of use or occupancy which increases the traffic service requirements of a development.

“Dwelling unit” means a structure, or portion of a structure that is used for separate residential occupancy by an individual, a family or group of unrelated individuals.

“Impact fee” means a monetary exaction charged to the applicant in connection with approval of a development project for the purpose of defraying all or a part of the cost of the public facilities related to the development project. This definition does not include fees specified in Government Code Section 66477, or fees for processing applications for permits or approvals.

“Imposition of fees” occurs when they are imposed or levied on a specific development.

“Multifamily residential development” means development or use of land for residential purposes involving more than one dwelling unit in a single structure.

“Public facilities” means public improvements, public services or community amenities.

“Single-family residential” means development or use of land for residential purposes involving no more than one dwelling unit in a single structure. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.030 Fees—Imposition and application.

This chapter establishes development impact fees which are imposed as a condition of approval upon all development projects for which a building permit is issued on or after the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter. Those impact fees are established for the following public facilities:

A. General government impact fee;

B. Fire impact fee;

C. Parkland in-lieu fee;

D. Parks and recreation development impact fee;

E. Police impact fee; and

F. Transportation impact fee.

Water and wastewater impact fees shall be governed by Title 13. These impact fees are established in order to pay for the capital costs of public facilities reasonably related to the needs of new development in the city. At least once every five years, the council shall review the basis for the impact fees to determine whether the fees are still reasonably related to the needs of new development. In establishing these fees, the council has considered the effect of the fees with respect to the city’s housing needs as established in the housing element of the general plan. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.040 Fees to be set by resolution.

The amount of fee assessments shall be determined by resolution adopted by the city council. Fees shall be adjusted annually by modifying the adopted value up or down in conformance with the Engineering News-Record Construction Cost Index. The factor for the adjustment of the fees shall be calculated and established each January by the director of financial services, utilizing the following formula:

Factor =

1 + Current Index - Base Index for Date of Adoption

Base Index for Date of Adoption

(Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.050 Payment of fees.

Except as otherwise provided in Section 66007 of the Government Code, impact fees shall be paid to the city at the time a building permit is issued. In cases where payment of all or part of the required fee is deferred at the time of building permit issuance, the community development director may require that the applicant, at the applicant’s expense, execute a contract with the city to pay all deferred impact fees prior to final inspection and/or issuance of a certificate of occupancy for the project. The contract shall specify the amount of the unpaid fee and a legal description of the property affected. It shall be recorded in the office of the county recorder and shall constitute a lien for the payment of the fees, which shall be enforceable against the successors in interest of the property owner. When impact fees are paid in full, the city, at the expense of the applicant or property owner, shall execute a release of any lien securing those impact fees. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.060 Protests.

Any party subject to the fees established by this chapter may protest the imposition of those fees by meeting all of the following requirements:

A. Tendering any required payment in full or providing satisfactory evidence of arrangements to pay the fee when due or ensure performance of the conditions necessary to meet the requirements of the imposition of the fee.

B. Serving written notice of protest on the city council which notice shall contain all of the following information:

1. A statement that the required payment is tendered, or will be tendered when due, under protest;

2. A statement informing the city council of the factual elements of the dispute and the legal theory forming the basis for the protest.

C. Serving the written notice of protest, no later than ninety days after the date of the imposition of the fees.

The city council shall consider that protest at a hearing to be held within sixty days after serving the written notice of protest. The decision of the city council shall be final. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.070 Exemptions.

The fees imposed under this chapter shall not apply to the following:

A. The United States or to any agency or instrumentality thereof, the state of California or any county or other political subdivision of the state of California;

B. Remodeling or alteration of an existing residential building, but only if the number of dwelling units is not increased or the use changed;

C. That portion of a structure that existed before the addition of dwelling units or the enlargement of floor area in a nonresidential structure. If a structure is destroyed or demolished and replaced within two years from the date of demolition, the impact fees shall be based on the service requirements of the new development less the service requirements of the development which it replaced. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.080 Credits and reimbursement.

If the applicant for approval of any development project is required by the city, as a condition of approval, to construct facilities, the cost of which has been used in the calculation of impact fees which apply to that project, the applicant may receive a credit against those impact fees, up to the amount charged for the same type of facility. If the cost of the improvements constructed by the applicant exceeds the amount of the impact fees charged to the development project for the same type of facility, the excess cost may be reimbursed to the applicant from other impact fee revenues within a reasonable time. To qualify for reimbursement, the applicant must enter into a reimbursement agreement with the city, and any such agreement must specify the amount to be reimbursed and the approximate schedule of the reimbursement. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.090 Disposition and use of fees.

The director of financial services shall establish a separate fund or account for each type of facility listed in Section 4.56.030. All impact fees collected by the city shall be deposited in the fund or account established for the specific type of facility for which the fee is collected. Any interest earned on funds deposited in a fund or account shall be deposited in that fund or account.

Funds deposited in those accounts shall be used only to pay for design and construction, including construction administration, of projects identified in resolutions or other formal city council action adopted pursuant to Section 4.56.030 as the basis for the impact fees, or for reimbursements as provided in Section 4.56.080. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)

4.56.100 Refunds.

If impact fees collected by the city have not been expended or designated for the intended purpose within five years following their collection, the city shall either refund those fees as provided in Section 66001 of the Government Code, or make findings as required by that section to retain the fees. The refund provision of this chapter shall apply only to moneys in possession of the city and need not be made with respect to any bonds, letters of credit or other items given to secure payment at a future date. (Ord. 1646 § 4 (Exh. A) (part), 2018)