New building fees could provide Glen Cove with an additional $60,000 in revenue next year and bring the fee structure closer to those imposed by surrounding communities, according to city officials.
The City Council on Tuesday approved doubling the application fee for commercial construction from $100 to $200. Most project permits will rise from $15 to $18 per 1,000 square feet. New residential fees include $250 to install sprinklers and $200 for heating, ventilating and air-conditioning systems.
Mayor Ralph Suozzi said increasing fees for builders is preferable to turning to taxpayers who already face a 2.88-percent levy increase in 2011. The city budgeted $20,000 in additional revenue from the fee changes, but expects closer to $60,000.
"It's just good policy," Suozzi said. "It's not out of line with what's going on elsewhere."
A city study reported that permit fees on a $1-million commercial project will increase $3,000 to $18,282. City officials said existing fees did not cover the time spent on plan reviews, revisions and inspections.
Plans for commercial projects "can be double to triple of what is required for residential and the initial review time can take up to triple the time of other applications," Glen Cove Building Department director Richard Summa wrote in a city memo.
During a series of public hearings in the past two months, some residents questioned asking developers to pay more during a slow economy. Pasquale Cervasio, a rental landlord who frequently clashes with the mayor, called the changes a tax on business.
Glenn Howard Jr., a Glen Cove Chamber of Commerce board member, said at a November hearing that he did not consider the increase "an inhibition to any business."
But Long Island Builders Institute president Ira Tane said, in general, municipalities seeking construction fee hikes are "kicking someone when they're down."