Article V-A - Municipal Capital Improvement
* Compiler’s Note: (a)(9) of Act 1996-58, which created the Department of Community and Economic Development and abolished the Department of Community Affairs, provided that housing, community assistance and other functions under Article V-A are transferred from the Department of Community Affairs to the Department of Community and Economic Development.
(Art. added Dec. 19, 1990, P.L.1343, No.209)
Section 501-A. Purposes. To further the purposes of this act in an era of increasing development and of a corresponding demand for municipal capital improvements, to insure that the cost of needed capital improvements be applied to new developments in a manner that will allocate equitably the cost of those improvements among property owners and to respond to the increasing difficulty which municipalities are experiencing in developing revenue sources to fund new capital infrastructure from the public sector, the following powers are granted to all municipalities, other than counties, which municipalities have adopted either a municipal or county comprehensive plan, subdivision and land development ordinance and zoning ordinance.
Section 502-A. Definitions. The following words and phrases when used in this article shall have the meanings given to them in this section unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
“Adjusted for family size,” adjusted in a manner which results in an income eligibility level which is lower for households with fewer than four people, or higher for households with more than four people, than the base income eligibility level determined as provided in the definition of low- to moderate-income persons based upon a formula as established by the rule of the agency.
“Adjusted gross income,” all wages, assets, regular cash or noncash contributions or gifts from persons outside the household, and such other resources and benefits as may be determined to be income by rule of the department, adjusted for family size, less deductions under section 62 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (Public Law 99-514, 26 U.S.C. 62 et seq.).
“Affordable,” with respect to the housing unit to be occupied by low- to moderate-income persons, monthly rents or monthly mortgage payments, including property taxes and insurance, that do not exceed 30% of that amount which represents 100% of the adjusted gross annual income for households within the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) or, if not within the MSA, within the county in which the housing unit is located, divided by 12.
“Agency,” the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency as created pursuant to the act of December 3, 1959 (P.L.1688, No.621), known as the “Housing Finance Agency Law.”
* “Department,” the Department of Community and Economic Development of the Commonwealth.
“Existing deficiencies,” existing highways, roads or streets operating at a level of service below the preferred level of service designated by the municipality, as adopted in the transportation capital improvement plan.
“Highways, roads or streets,” any highways, roads or streets identified on the legally adopted municipal street or highway plan or the official map which carry vehicular traffic, together with all necessary appurtenances, including bridges, rights-of-way and traffic control improvements. The term shall not include the interstate highway system.
“Impact fee,” a charge or fee imposed by a municipality against new development in order to generate revenue for funding the costs of transportation capital improvements necessitated by and attributable to new development.
“Low- to moderate-income persons,” one or more natural persons or a family, the total annual adjusted gross household income of which is less than 100% of the median annual adjusted gross income for households in this Commonwealth or is less than 100% of the median annual adjusted gross income for households within the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) or, if not within the MSA, within the county in which the household is located, whichever is greater.
“New development,” any commercial, industrial or residential or other project which involves new construction, enlargement, reconstruction, redevelopment, relocation or structural alteration and which is expected to generate additional vehicular traffic within the transportation service area of the municipality.
“Offsite improvements,” those public capital improvements which are not onsite improvements and that serve the needs of more than one development.
“Onsite improvements,” all improvements constructed on the applicant’s property, or the improvements constructed on the property abutting the applicant’s property necessary for the ingress or egress to the applicant’s property, and required to be constructed by the applicant pursuant to any municipal ordinance, including, but not limited to, the municipal building code, subdivision and land development ordinance, PRD regulations and zoning ordinance.
“Pass-through trip,” a trip which has both an origin and a destination outside the service area.
“Road improvement,” the construction, enlargement, expansion or improvement of public highways, roads or streets. It shall not include bicycle lanes, bus lanes, busways, pedestrian ways, rail lines or tollways.
“Traffic or transportation engineer or planner,” any person who is a registered professional engineer in this Commonwealth or is otherwise qualified by education and experience to perform traffic or transportation planning analyses of the type required in this act and who deals with the planning, geometric design and traffic operations of highways, roads and streets, their networks, terminals and abutting lands and relationships with other modes of transportation for the achievement of convenient, efficient and safe movement of goods and persons.
“Transportation capital improvements,” those offsite road improvements that have a life expectancy of three or more years, not including costs for maintenance, operation or repair.
“Transportation service area,” a geographically defined portion of the municipality not to exceed seven square miles of area which, pursuant to the comprehensive plan and applicable district zoning regulations, has an aggregation of sites with development potential creating the need for transportation improvements within such area to be funded by impact fees. No area may be included in more than one transportation service area.
Section 503-A. Grant of Power.
(a) The governing body of each municipality other than a county, in accordance with the conditions and procedures set forth in this act, may enact, amend and repeal impact fee ordinances and, thereafter, may establish, at the time of municipal approval of any new development or subdivision, the amount of an impact fee for any of the offsite public transportation capital improvements authorized by this act as a condition precedent to final plat approval under the municipality’s subdivision and land development ordinance. Every ordinance adopted pursuant to this act shall include, but not be limited to, provisions for the following:
(1) The conditions and standards for the determination and imposition of impact fees consistent with the provisions of this act.
(2) The agency, body or office within the municipality which shall administer the collection, disbursement and accounting of impact fees.
(3) The time, method and procedure for the payment of impact fees.
(4) The procedure for issuance of any credit against or reimbursement of impact fees which an applicant may be entitled to receive consistent with the provisions of this act.
(5) Exemptions or credits which the municipality may choose to adopt. In this regard the municipality shall have the power to:
(i) Provide a credit of up to 100% of the applicable impact fees for all new development and growth which constitutes affordable housing to low- and moderate-income persons.
(ii) Provide a credit of up to 100% of the applicable impact fees for growth which are determined by the municipality to serve an overriding public interest.
(iii) Exempt de minimus applications from impact fee requirements. If such a policy is adopted, the definition of de minimus shall be contained in the ordinance.
(b) No municipality shall have the power to require as a condition for approval of a land development or subdivision application the construction, dedication or payment of any offsite improvements or capital expenditures of any nature whatsoever or impose any contribution in lieu thereof, exaction fee, or any connection, tapping or similar fee except as may be specifically authorized under this act.
(c) No municipality may levy an impact fee prior to the enactment of a municipal impact fee ordinance adopted in accordance with the procedures set forth in this act, except as may be specifically authorized by the provisions of this act. A transportation impact fee shall be imposed by a municipality within a service area or areas only where such fees have been determined and imposed pursuant to the standards, provisions and procedures set forth herein.
(d) Impact fees may be used for those costs incurred for improvements designated in the transportation capital improvement program which are attributable to new development, including the acquisition of land and rights-of-way; engineering, legal and planning costs; and all other costs which are directly related to road improvements within the service area or areas, including debt service. Impact fees shall not be imposed or used for costs associated with any of the following:
(1) Construction, acquisition or expansion of municipal facilities other than capital improvements identified in the transportation capital improvements plan required by this act.
(2) Repair, operation or maintenance of existing or new capital improvements.
(3) Upgrading, updating, expanding or replacing existing capital improvements to serve existing developments in order to meet stricter safety, efficiency, environmental or regulatory standards not attributable to new development.
(4) Upgrading, updating, expanding or replacing existing capital improvements to remedy deficiencies in service to existing development or fund deficiencies in existing municipal capital improvements resulting from a lack of adequate municipal funding over the years for maintenance or capital construction costs.
(5) Preparing and developing the land use assumptions, roadway sufficiency analysis and transportation capital improvement plan, except that impact fees may be used for no more than a proportionate amount of the cost of professional consultants incurred in preparing a roadway sufficiency analysis of infrastructure within a specified transportation service area, such allowable proportion to be calculated by dividing the total costs of all road improvements in the adopted transportation capital improvement program within the transportation service area attributable to projected future development within the service area, as defined in section 504-A(e)(1)(iii), by the total costs of all road improvements in the adopted transportation capital improvement program within the specific transportation service area, as defined in section 504-A.
(e) Nothing in this act shall be deemed to alter or affect a municipality’s existing power to require an applicant for municipal approval of any new development or subdivision from paying for the installation of onsite improvements as provided for in a municipality’s subdivision and land development ordinance as authorized by this act.
(f) No municipality may delay or deny any application for building permit, certificate-of-occupancy, development or any other approval or permit required for construction, land development, subdivision or occupancy for the reason that any project of an approved capital improvement program has not been completed.
(g) A municipality which has enacted an impact fee ordinance on or before June 1, 1990, may for a period not to exceed one year from the effective date of this article, adopt an impact fee ordinance to conform with the standards and procedures set forth in this article. Where a fee previously imposed pursuant to an ordinance in effect on June 1, 1990, for transportation improvements authorized by this article is greater than the recalculated fee due under the newly adopted ordinance, the individual who paid the fee is entitled to a refund of the difference. If the recalculated fee is greater than the previously paid fee, there shall be no additional charge.
(h) The powers provided by this section may be exercised by two or more municipalities, other than counties, which have adopted a joint municipal comprehensive plan pursuant to Article XI through a joint authority, subject to the conditions and procedures set forth in this article.
Section 504-A. Transportation Capital Improvements Plan.
(a) A transportation capital improvements plan shall be prepared and adopted by the governing body of the municipality prior to the enactment of any impact fee ordinance. The municipality shall provide qualified professionals to assist the transportation impact fee advisory committee or the planning commission in the preparation of the transportation capital improvements plan and calculation of the impact fees to be imposed to implement the plan in accordance with the procedures, provisions and standards set forth in this act.
(b)(1) An impact fee advisory committee shall be created by resolution of a municipality intending to adopt a transportation impact fee ordinance. The resolution shall describe the geographical area or areas of the municipality for which the advisory committee shall develop the land use assumptions and conduct the roadway sufficiency analysis studies.
(2) The advisory committee shall consist of no fewer than 7 nor more than 15 members, all of whom shall serve without compensation. The governing body of the municipality shall appoint as members of the advisory committee persons who are either residents of the municipality or conduct business within the municipality and are not employees or officials of the municipality. Not less than 40% of the members of the advisory committee shall be representatives of the real estate, commercial and residential development, and building industries. The municipality may also appoint traffic or transportation engineers or planners to serve on the advisory committee provided the appointment is made after consultation with the advisory committee members. The traffic or transportation engineers or planners appointed to the advisory committee may not be employed by the municipality for the development of or consultation on the roadways sufficiency analysis which may lead to the adoption of the transportation capital improvements plan.
(3) (The governing body of the municipality may elect to designate the municipal planning commission appointed pursuant to Article II as the impact fee advisory committee. If the existing planning commission does not include members representative of the real estate, commercial and residential development, and building industries at no less than 40% of the membership, the governing body of the municipality shall appoint the sufficient number of representatives of the aforementioned industries who reside in the municipality or conduct business within the municipality to serve as ad hoc voting members of the planning commission whenever such commission functions as the impact fee advisory committee.
(4) No impact fee ordinance may be invalidated as a result of any legal action challenging the composition of the advisory committee which is not brought within 90 days following the first public meeting of said advisory committee.
(5) The advisory committee shall serve in an advisory capacity and shall have the following duties:
(i) To make recommendations with respect to land use assumptions, the development of comprehensive road improvements and impact fees.
(ii) To make recommendations to approve, disapprove or modify a capital improvement program by preparing a written report containing these recommendations to the municipality.
(iii) To monitor and evaluate the implementation of a capital improvement program and the assessment of impact fees, and report annually to the municipality with respect to the same.
(iv) To advise the municipality of the need to revise or update the land use assumptions, capital improvement program or impact fees.
(c)(1) As a prerequisite to the development of the transportation capital improvements plan, the advisory committee shall develop land use assumptions for the determination of future growth and development within the designated area or areas as described by the municipal resolution and recommend its findings to the governing body. Prior to the issuance and presentation of a written report to the municipality on the recommendations for proposed land use assumptions upon which to base the development of the transportation capital improvements plan, the advisory committee shall conduct a public hearing, following the providing of proper notice in accordance with section 107, for the consideration of the land use assumption proposals. Following receipt of the advisory committee report, which shall include the findings of the public hearing, the governing body of the municipality shall by resolution approve, disapprove or modify the land use assumptions recommended by the advisory committee.
(2) The land use assumptions report shall:
(i) Describe the existing land uses within the designated area or areas and the highways, roads or streets incorporated therein.
(ii) To the extent possible, reflect projected changes in land uses, densities of residential development, intensities of nonresidential development and population growth rates which may affect the level of traffic within the designated area or areas over a period of at least the next five years. These projections shall be based on an analysis of population growth rates during the prior five-year period, current zoning regulations, approved subdivision and land developments, and the future land use plan contained in the adopted municipal comprehensive plan. It may also refer to all professionally produced studies and reports pertaining to the municipality regarding such items as demographics, parks and recreation, economic development and any other study deemed appropriate by the municipality.
(3) If the municipality is located in a county which has created a county planning agency, the advisory committee shall forward a copy of their proposed land use assumptions to the county planning agency for its comments at least 30 days prior to the public hearing. At the same time, the advisory committee shall also forward copies of the proposed assumptions to all contiguous municipalities and to the local school district for their review and comments.
(d) (1) Upon adoption of the land use assumptions by the municipality, the advisory committee shall prepare, or cause to be prepared, a roadway sufficiency analysis which shall establish the existing level of infrastructure sufficiency and preferred levels of service within any designated area or areas of the municipality as described by the resolution adopted pursuant to the creation of the advisory committee. The roadway sufficiency analysis shall be prepared for any highway, road or street within the designated area or areas on which the need for road improvements attributable to projected future new development is anticipated. The municipality shall commission a traffic or transportation engineer or planner to assist the advisory committee in the preparation of the roadway sufficiency analysis. Municipalities may jointly commission such engineer or planner to assist in the preparation of multiple municipality roadway sufficiency analyses. In preparing the roadway sufficiency analysis report, the engineer may consider and refer to previously produced professional studies and reports relevant to the production of the roadway sufficiency analysis as required by the section. It shall be deemed that the roads, streets and highways not on the roadway sufficiency analysis report are not impacted by future development. The roadway sufficiency analysis shall include the following components:
(i) The establishment of existing volumes of traffic and existing levels of service.
(ii) The identification of a preferred level of service established pursuant to the following:
(A) The level of service shall be one of the categories of road service as defined by the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences or the Institute of Transportation Engineers. The municipality may choose to select a level of service on a transportation service area basis as the preferred level of service. The preferred levels of service shall be designated by the governing body of the municipality following determination of the existing level of service as established by the roadway sufficiency analysis. If the preferred level of service is designated as greater than the existing level of service, the municipality shall be required to identify road improvements needed to correct the existing deficiencies.
(B) Following adoption of the preferred level of service, such level of service may be waived for a particular road segment or intersection if the municipality finds that one or more of the following effectively precludes provision of road improvements necessary to meet the level of service: geometric design limitations, topographic limitations or the unavailability of necessary right-of-way.
(iii) The identification of existing deficiencies which need to be remedied to accommodate existing traffic at the preferred level of service.
(iv) The specification of the required road improvements needed to bring the existing level of service to the preferred level of service.
(v) A projection of anticipated traffic volumes, with a separate determination of pass-through trips, for a period of not less than five years from the date of the preparation of the roadway sufficiency analysis based upon the land use assumptions adopted under this section.
(vi) The identification of forecasted deficiencies which will be created by “pass-through” trips.
(2) The advisory committee shall provide the governing body with the findings of the roadway sufficiency analysis. Following receipt of the advisory committee report, the governing body shall by resolution approve, disapprove or modify the roadway sufficiency analysis recommended by the advisory committee.
(e) (1) Utilizing the information provided by the land use assumption and the roadway sufficiency analysis as the basis for determination of the need for road improvements to remedy existing deficiencies and accommodate future projected traffic volumes, the advisory committee shall identify those capital projects which the municipality should consider for adoption in its transportation capital improvements plan and shall recommend the delineation of the transportation service area or areas. The capital improvement plan shall be developed in accordance with generally accepted engineering and planning practices. The capital improvement program shall include projections of all designated road improvements in the capital improvement program. The total cost of the road improvements shall be based upon estimated costs, using standard traffic engineering standards, with a 10% maximum contingency which may be added to said estimate. These costs shall include improvements to correct existing deficiencies with identified anticipated sources of funding and timetables for implementation. The transportation capital improvements plan shall include the following components:
(i) A description of the existing highways, roads and streets within the transportation service area and the road improvements required to update, improve, expand or replace such highways, roads and streets in order to meet the preferred level of service and usage and stricter safety, efficiency, environmental or regulatory standards not attributable to new development.
(ii) A plan specifying the road improvements within the transportation service area attributable to forecasted pass-through traffic so as to maintain the preferred level of service after existing deficiencies identified by the roadway sufficiency analysis have been remedied.
(iii) A plan specifying the road improvements or portions thereof within the transportation service area attributable to the projected future development, consistent with the adopted land use assumptions, in order to maintain the preferred level of service after accommodation for pass-through traffic and after existing deficiencies identified in the roadway sufficiency analysis have been remedied.
(iv) The projected costs of the road improvements to be included in the transportation capital improvements plan, calculating separately for each project by the following categories:
(A) The costs or portion thereof associated with correcting existing deficiencies as specified in subparagraph (i).
(B) The costs or portions thereof attributable to providing road improvements to accommodate forecasted pass-through trips as specified in subparagraph (ii).
(C) The costs of providing necessary road improvements or portions thereof attributable to projected future development as specified in subparagraph (iii); provided that no more than 50% of the cost of the improvements to any highway, road or street which qualifies as a State Highway or portion of the rural State Highway System as provided in section 102 of the act of June 1, 1945 (P.L.1242, No. 428), known as the “State Highway Law” may be included.
(v) A projected timetable and proposed budget for constructing each road improvement contained in the plan.
(vi) The proposed source of funding for each capital improvement included in the road plan. This shall include anticipated revenue from the Federal Government, State government, municipality, impact fees and any other source. The estimated revenue for each capital improvement in the plan which is to be provided by impact fees shall be identified separately for each project.
(2) The source of funding required for projects to remedy existing deficiencies as set forth in paragraph
(1)(i) and the road improvements attributable to forecasted pass-through traffic as set forth in paragraph
(1)(ii) shall be exclusive of funds generated from the assessment of impact fees.
(3) Upon the completion of the transportation capital improvements plan and prior to its adoption by the governing body of the municipality and the enactment of a municipal impact fee ordinance, the advisory committee shall hold at least one public hearing for consideration of the plan. Notification of the public hearing shall comply with the requirement of section 107. The plan shall be available for public inspection at least ten working days prior to the date of the public hearing. After presentation of the recommendation by the advisory committee or its representatives at a public meeting of the governing body, the governing body may make such changes to the plan prior to its adoption as the governing body deems appropriate following review of the public comments made at the public hearing.
(4) The governing body may periodically, but no more frequently than annually, request the impact fee advisory committee to review the capital improvements plan and impact fee charges and make recommendations for revisions for subsequent consideration and adoption by the governing body based only on the following:
(i) New subsequent development which has occurred in the municipality.
(ii) Capital improvements contained in the capital improvements plan, the construction of which has been completed.
(iii) Unavoidable delays beyond the responsibility or control of the municipality in the construction of capital improvements contained in the plan.
(iv) Significant changes in the land use assumptions.
(v) Changes in the estimated costs of the proposed transportation capital improvements, which may be recalculated by applying the construction cost index as published in the American City/County Magazine or the Engineering News Record.
(vi) Significant changes in the projected revenue from all sources listed needed for the construction of the transportation capital improvements.
(f) Any improvements to Federal-aid or State highways to be funded in part by impact fees shall require the approval of the Department of Transportation and, if necessary, the United States Department of Transportation. Nothing in this act shall be deemed to alter or diminish the powers, duties or jurisdiction of the Department of Transportation with respect to State highways or the rural State highway system.
(g) Two or more municipalities may, upon agreement, appoint a joint impact fee advisory committee which may develop roadway sufficiency analyses and transportation capital improvements plans for the participating municipalities. The members of the advisory committee must be either residents of or conduct business within one of the participating municipalities.
Section 505-A. Establishment and Administration of Impact Fees.
(a) (1) The impact fee for transportation capital improvements shall be based upon the total costs of the road improvements included in the adopted capital improvement plan within a given transportation service area attributable to and necessitated by new development within the service area as calculated pursuant to section 504-A(e)(1)(iv)(C), divided by the number of anticipated peak hour trips generated by all new development consistent with the adopted land use assumptions and calculated in accordance with the Trip Generation Manual published by the Institute of Transportation Engineers, fourth or subsequent edition as adopted by the municipality by ordinance or resolution to equal a per trip cost for transportation improvements within the service area.
(2) The specific impact fee for a specific new development or subdivision within the service area for road improvements shall be determined as of the date of preliminary land development or subdivision approval by multiplying the per trip cost established for the service area as determined in section 503-A(a) by the estimated number of peak-hour trips to be generated by the new development or subdivision using generally accepted traffic engineering standards.
(3) A municipality may authorize or require the preparation of a special transportation study in order to determine traffic generation or circulation for a new nonresidential development to assist in the determination of the amount of the transportation fee for such development or subdivision. The municipality shall set forth by ordinance the circumstances in which such a study should be authorized or required, provided however, that no special transportation study shall be required when there is no deviation from the land use assumptions resulting in increased density, intensity or trip generation by a particular development. A developer or municipality may, however, at any time, voluntarily prepare and submit a traffic study for a proposed development or may have such a study prepared at its expense after the development is completed to include actual trips generated by the development for use in any appeal as provided for under this act. The special transportation study shall be prepared by a qualified traffic or transportation engineer using procedures and methods established by the municipality based on generally accepted transportation planning and engineering standards. The study, where required by the municipality, shall be submitted prior to the imposition of an impact fee and shall be taken into consideration by the municipality in increasing or reducing the amount of the impact fee for the new development for the amount shown on the impact fee schedule adopted by the municipality.
(b) The governing body shall enact an impact ordinance setting forth a description of the boundaries and a fee schedule for each transportation service area. At least ten working days prior to the adoption of the ordinance at a public meeting, the ordinance shall be available for public inspection. The impact fee ordinance shall include, but not be limited to, those provisions set forth in section 503-A(a) and conform with the standards, provisions and procedures set forth in this act.
(c) (1) A municipality may give notice of its intention to adopt an impact fee ordinance by publishing a statement of such intention twice in one newspaper of general circulation in the municipality. The first publication shall not occur before the adoption of the resolution by which the municipality establishes its impact fee advisory committee. The second publication shall occur not less than one nor more than three weeks thereafter.
(2) A municipal impact fee ordinance adopted under and pursuant to this act may provide that the provisions of the ordinance may have retroactive application, for a period not to exceed 18 months after the adoption of the resolution creating an impact fee advisory committee pursuant to section 504-A (b)(1), to preliminary or tentative applications for land development, subdivision or PRD. with the municipality on or after the first publication of the municipality’s intention to adopt an impact fee ordinance; provided, however, that the impact fee imposed on building permits for construction of new development approved pursuant to such applications filed during the period of pendancy shall not exceed $1,000 per anticipated peak hour trip as calculated in accordance with the generally accepted traffic engineering standards as set forth under the provisions of subsection (a)(1) or the subsequently adopted fee established by the ordinance, whichever is less.
(3) No action upon an application for land development, subdivision or PRD. shall be postponed, delayed or extended by the municipality because adoption of a municipal impact fee ordinance is being considered. Furthermore, the adoption of an impact fee ordinance more than 18 months after adoption of a resolution creating the impact fee advisory committee shall not be retroactive or applicable to plats submitted for preliminary or tentative approval prior to the legal publication of the proposed impact fee ordinance and any fees collected pursuant to this subsection shall be refunded to the payor of such fees; provided the adoption of the impact fee ordinance was not delayed due to the initiation of any litigation challenging the adoption of such ordinance.
(d) Any impact fees collected by a municipality pursuant to a municipal ordinance shall be deposited by the municipality into an interest-bearing fund account designated solely for impact fees, clearly identifying the transportation service area from which the fee was received. Funds collected in one transportation service area must be accounted for and expended within that transportation service area, and such funds shall only be expended for that portion of the transportation capital improvements identified as being funded by impact fees under the transportation capital improvements plan. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this act, municipalities may expend impact fees paid by an applicant on projects not contained in the adopted transportation capital improvement plan, or may provide credit against impact fees for the value of any construction projects not contained in the transportation capital improvement plan which are performed at the applicant’s expense, if all of the following criteria are met:
(1) The applicant has provided written consent to use of its collected impact fees, or the provision of such credit against the applicant’s impact fees, for specific transportation projects which are not included in the transportation capital improvement plan.
(2) The alternative transportation projects, whether highway or multimodal, have as their purpose the reduction of traffic congestion or the removal of vehicle trips from the roadway network.
(3) The municipality amends its transportation capital improvement plan components required by section 504-A(e)(1)(vi) to provide replacement of the collected impact fees transferred to transportation projects outside the approved transportation capital improvement plan from sources other than impact fees or developer contributions within three years of completion of the alternative projects to which the transferred fees were applied or for which credit was provided. All interest earned on such funds shall become funds of that account. The municipality shall provide that an accounting be made annually for any fund account containing impact fee proceeds and earned interest. Such accounting shall include, but not be limited to, the total funds collected, the source of the funds collected, the total amount of interest accruing on such funds and the amount of funds expended on specific transportation improvements. Notice of the availability of the results of the accounting shall be included and published as part of the annual audit required of municipalities. A copy of the report shall also be provided to the advisory committee.
(e) All transportation impact fees imposed under the terms of this act shall be payable at the time of the issuance of building permits for the applicable new development or subdivision. The municipality may not require the applicant to provide a guarantee of financial security for the payment of any transportation impact fees, except the municipality may provide for the deposit with the municipality of financial security in an amount sufficient to cover the cost of the construction of any road improvement contained in the transportation capital improvement plan which is performed by the applicant.
(f) An applicant shall be entitled to a credit against the impact fee in the amount of the fair market value of any land dedicated by the applicant to the municipality for future right-of-way, realignment or widening of any existing roadways or for the value of any construction of road improvements contained in the transportation capital improvement program which is performed at the applicant’s expense. The amount of such credit for any capital improvement constructed shall be the amount allocated in the capital improvement program, including contingency factors, for such work. The fair market value of any and dedicated by the applicant shall be determined as of the date of the submission of the land development or subdivision application to the municipality.
(g) Impact fees previously collected by a municipality shall be refunded, together with earned accrued interest thereon, to the payor of such fees from the date of payment under any of the following circumstances:
(1) In the event that a municipality terminates or completes an adopted capital improvements plan for a transportation service area and there remains at the time of termination or completion undispersed funds in the accounts established for that purpose, the municipality shall provide written notice by certified mail to those persons who previously paid the fees which remain undispersed of the availability of said funds for refund of the person’s proportionate share of the fund balance. The allocation of the refund shall be determined by generally accepted accounting practices. In the event that any of the funds remain unclaimed following one year after the notice, which notice shall be provided to the last known address provided by the payor of the fees to the municipality, the municipality shall be authorized to transfer any funds so remaining to any other fund in the municipality without any further obligation to refund said funds.
(2) If the municipality fails to commence construction of any transportation service area road improvements within three years of the scheduled construction date set forth in the transportation capital improvements plan, any person who paid any impact fees pursuant to that transportation capital improvements plan shall, upon written request to the municipality, receive a refund of that portion of the fee attributable to the contribution for the uncommenced road improvement, plus the interest accumulated thereon from the date of payment.
(3) If, upon completion of any road improvements project, the actual expenditures of the capital project are less than 95% of the costs properly allocable to the fee paid within the transportation service area in which the completed road improvement was adopted, the municipality shall refund the pro rata difference between the budgeted costs and the actual expenditures, including interest accumulated thereon from the date of payment, to the person or persons who paid the impact fees for such improvements.
(4) If the new development for which transportation impact fees were paid is not commenced prior to the expiration of building permits issued for the new development within the time limits established by applicable building codes within the municipality or if the building permit as issued for the new development is altered and the alteration results in a decrease in the amount of the impact fee due in accordance with the calculations set forth in subsection (a)(1).
(h) Where an impact fee ordinance has been adopted pursuant to the other provisions of this act, the ordinance may impose an additional impact fee upon new developments which generate 1,000 or more new peak-hour trips, net of pass-by trips as defined by the current edition of the institute of transportation engineers trip generation manual, during the peak-hour period designated in the ordinance. In such case, the impact fee ordinance adopted under this act may require the applicant for such a development to perform a traffic analysis of development traffic impact on highways, roads or streets outside the transportation service area in which the development site is located but within the boundaries of the municipality or municipalities adopting a joint municipal impact fee ordinance or municipalities which are participating in a joint municipal authority authorized to impose impact fees by this article. Any such highways, roads or streets or parts thereof outside the transportation service area which will accommodate 10% or more of development traffic and 100 or more new peak-hour trips may be required to be studied, and the ordinance may require the applicant to mitigate the traffic impacts of the development on such highways, roads and streets to maintain the predevelopment conditions after completion of the development.
Section 506-A. Appeals.
(a) Any person required to pay an impact fee shall have the right to contest the land use assumptions, the development and implementation of the transportation capital improvement program, the imposition of impact fees, the periodic updating of the transportation capital improvement program, the refund of impact fees and all other matters relating to impact fees, including the constitutionality or validity of the impact fee ordinance by filing an appeal with the court of common pleas.
(b) A master may be appointed by the court to hear testimony on the issues and return the record and a transcript of the testimony, together with a report and recommendations, or the court may appoint a master to hold a nonrecord hearing and to make recommendations and return the same to the court, in which case either party may demand a hearing de novo before the court.
(c) Any cost incurred by parties in such an appeal shall be the separate responsibility of the parties.
Section 507-A. Prerequisites for Assessing Sewer and Water Tap-in Fees.
(a) No municipality may charge any tap-in connection or other similar fee as a condition of connection to a municipally owned sewer or water system unless such fee is calculated as provided in the applicable provisions of the act of May 2, 1945, (P.L.382, No.164), known as the “Municipality Authorities Act of 1945.”
(b) Where a municipally owned water or sewer system is to be extended at the expense of the owner or owners of properties or where the municipality otherwise would construct the connection end or customer facilities services (other than water meter installation), the property owner or owners shall have the right to construct such extension or make such connection and install such customer facilities himself or themselves or through a subcontractor in accordance with the “Municipality Authorities Act of 1945.”
(c) Where a property owner or owners construct or cause to be constructed any addition, expansion or extension to or of a sewer or water system of a municipality whereby such addition, expansion or extension provides future excess capacity to accommodate future development upon the lands of others, the municipality shall provide for the reimbursement to the property owner or owners in accordance with the provisions of the “Municipality Authorities Act of 1945.”
Section 508-A. Joint Municipal Impact Fee Ordinance.
(a) For the purpose of permitting municipalities which cooperatively plan for their future to also provide for transportation capital improvements in a cooperative manner, the governing bodies of each municipality which has adopted a joint municipal comprehensive plan pursuant to Article XI, in accordance with the conditions and procedures set forth in this article, may cooperate with one or more municipalities to enact, amend and repeal joint transportation impact fee ordinances to accomplish the purposes of this act in accordance with this article.
(b) The procedures set forth in this article shall be applicable to the enactment of a joint municipal impact fee ordinance.
(c) Each municipality party to a joint municipal impact fee ordinance shall approve the advisory committee and shall adopt the land use assumptions, roadway sufficiency analysis, capital improvement plan, and ordinances and amendments thereto in accordance with the procedures in this article, and no such ordinance shall become effective until it has been properly adopted by all the participating municipalities.
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