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Newmarket aims to collect $85M from developers in next decade

It will cost developers more to build in Newmarket come Sept. 1
July 23, 2019
Kim Champion

Newmarket council has adopted three new bylaws that will allow it to collect a projected $85 million over the next decade from developers to help pay for growth-related projects.

This follows a standard five-year review of the charges builders must pay municipalities so it can put in place the necessary infrastructure and services to meet the demands of growth.

The town’s development charges review and a comprehensive study on the issue also included consultation with members of the development industry and BILD GTA, the association that represents them, to get feedback on the proposed new rates, which are set to rise between 19 per cent and 25 per cent as of Sept. 1, 2019.

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No objections or concerns were raised by builders, the town’s financial business analyst Kevin Yaraskavitch told Newmarket’s elected officials at the July 18 special council meeting on the subject.

Yaraskavitch also noted that Newmarket’s new development charge rates come at the same time as the province’s new legislation and regulations are being rolled out as part of Bill 108, the More Choice, More Homes Act.

Among other reforms, Bill 108 removes a municipality’s ability to collect development charges to help fund such things as parks and recreation, and library services. However, a new funding hat to be made available to municipalities, known as the community benefits charge, is expected to replace a portion of that funding.

“We have to put a lot of infrastructure in place to be ready for growth and if we don’t pay for it through development charges, we’re putting it on property taxes, it’s pretty straightforward,” Mayor John Taylor said.