Letters to the Editor

County gave builders a break. Now it wants you to pay for this cost of development | Letter to the editor

The Board of County Commissioners is holding public hearings on the possible stormwater fee charge to citizens.

Meetings span the month of November hoping to garner citizen support for this fee. Wetlands and wooded areas provide drainage during heavy rains; however, all the new development approved by commissioners has destroyed and drained wetlands and wooded space, leaving impervious surfaces, adding to much more runoff. Commissioners are not good stewards of our county.

In 2019, the board approved Ordinance 18-07 reducing the amount of impact fees developers must pay to 90% despite the taxpayer-funded study by Tischler Bise recommending 100%. In approving this ordinance, the board stated it was in the best interest of the public health, safety, and welfare of Manatee County to cap impact fees at the 90% level to facilitate a strong economic climate in the county and that it would provide sufficient funding for capital facilities needed to accommodate new development.

Imposing a stormwater fee on citizens is contrary to their statement supporting reduced impact fees. Citizens’ tax dollars should not pay developer fees and for the board’s misguided decisions giving developers millions of dollars of impact fee discounts.

Barbara A. Angelucci