Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Fayetteville Citizens Pass Impact Fees

Fayetteville voters appear to have passed the ordinance assessing road impact fees on new developments by a one-vote margin. The preliminary but uncertified totals are 2,015 FOR impact fees and 2.014 AGAINST.

“This is a good win no matter what happens,” said Alderman Lioneld Jordan, the primary sponsor of the fees to make developers pay their fair share for creating sprawl and traffic congestion.

Those supporting the ordinance reported spending about $1,000 for one newspaper ad, a website, and some handbills. The opponents, led by real estate developers and salesmen, spent more than $40,000 on radio, television, newspapers, and outdoor ads in their unsuccessful effort to defeat the measure.

The Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce and its captive Fayetteville Economic Development Council, a group partially funded by public tax dollars from the city and additional public funds from the UA.

"It’s unbelievable, ” said Mike Henry, a local realtor who led the fight against the impact fees. "I mean the voters have spoken, so if that’s the way it worked out then that’s the way it worked out."

In addition to the real estate interests who blew $40,000 in the failed campaign, the other big losers are Mayor Dan Coody, who displayed a total lack of leadership, and Alderman Adella Gray, who broke her campaign promise to support impact fees.

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