Developers and trades in Vancouver to be hit with increased fees
Developers and trades in Vancouver will face a huge range of increased rezoning and permitting fees in 2022 — including a new $218-an-hour fee to get ahead of the regular queue for copies of documents and property research letters.
On Tuesday, City of Vancouver council will vote on the proposed fee hikes for rezoning applications, general development, building and other related permits — that will average five per cent for a total of 32 per cent in increases since 2017. The changes will apply to around 70 different types of fees.
According to a staff report , increased regulations and “the resulting process and technology challenges” mean that permit turnaround times have been extending during 2021.
The report goes on to state that COVID-related supply chain issues in the construction industry have resulted in project slowdowns during the building inspection phase of permits and this had also made delays worse.
In 2018, fees increased on average 12 per cent, then three per cent the following year and three per cent in 2020.
According to the report, without increasing fees, the building permitting program will not generate enough money to cover its costs.
The new fee regime will include a $218-per-hour fee for a customer who want copies of documents and property research letters (comfort letters) ahead of the regular queue.
“Customers sometimes require expedited service due to tight deadlines (e.g. closing a real-estate deal) and will ask staff to complete their requests ahead of those already in our queue,” the report states.
“Customers offer to pay additional fees to have their request expedited, but staff has to deny the requests to avoid creating inequity in our process, resulting in undesirable consequences for customers.”