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Riverhead cuts new house building fee

The Riverhead Town Board has decided to cut $2,000 from the cost of building a new house in the town, reducing the fee included in building permits to $3,000 from $5,000.

The town requires home builders to include a park or other recreational area in their building plans or pay a fee, which the town uses for building or maintaining parks.

Several years ago the town board increased the fee to $5,000, citing the rise in the value of property in the town. In voting Wednesday to return the fee to its former level, Town Supervisor Sean Walter said the lower figure would more accurately reflect housing values in the current market.

“We’ve gone from $2,000 to $3,000 to $5,000 to $3,000, [all] to keep up with land values,” said Councilman George Gabrielsen.

The resolution to cut the fee was approved 4-0. Town officials said the reduced fee would apply to new applications for building permits. Fees already paid will not be reduced retroactively, they said.

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