Local News

Cary Raises Some Impact Fees, Creates 1 New Fee

Posted April 7, 2008
Updated April 8, 2008

— The Cary Town Council voted Monday night to increase impact fees for water and sewer services, but not for transportation, public-information officer Susan Moran said.

Council members approved raising those fees by 75 percent of the maximum cost to lay new water and sewer lines, as estimated in a city study. They take effect with the 2008-09 budget on July 1.

Under the new rates, the water and sewer development fees for a new 2,500 square foot home will increase by about $938 to a total of $5,261. The total increase is dependent upon the size of the home.

The costs borne by commercial developers will rise similarly. The water and sewer charges for a 150,000-square-foot building will go to $130,230.

Officials also created a new impact fee to install reclaimed-water irrigation meters. That fee was set at $187.

The council unanimously voted to keep the transportation fee level at $1,386, because that fee was already among the highest in the Triangle.

Mayor Harold Weinbrecht has pushed for impact fees as a way to control growth and fund its associated infrastructure costs. He has previously said that he believes that impact fees can decrease growth in some areas – such as Crossroads – and encourage it in others – such as downtown.

Town officials said that when Cary decreased impact fees in 2002, growth decreased, but increased in 2004 when impact fees were dropped to 1999 levels.

Developers expressed worry that significant increases to impact fees could stunt growth in Cary.

"People need to make the numbers work for their business," Suzanne M. Harris, government affairs vice president of the Home Builders Association of Raleigh-Wake County, said at a Feb. 15 town council meeting. "And if their fees get to a point where they're too high, then decisions will be made to build elsewhere."

Statistics released by the town and the association differed on whether Cary's current impact fees are the second- or fourth-highest in the county. Both agreed that Holly Springs has the highest impact fees and Fuquay-Varina, the lowest.


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  • wrx44 Apr 8, 2008

    Leonardo, I agree with you....I have no problem with builders/developers maximizing profits as long as it is not on the backs of taxpayers as it has been in Cary for years!....They don't want the grave train to stop!

    As for Cary being a town of snobs, that is ridiculous. What Cary is is a nice town to raise a family and live quietly if you so choose. As one other person said, we have low crime and taxes?....and that dictates being snobs!....laughable.

    I moved to Cary in 1997 (from Raleigh) making $32k per year. I don't think that is anywhere near snob money!

    As a poster mentioned, people in Cary are too busy and have no interest in being condescending to other towns. I have never experienced that in my 11 years hear.

    If you want to call an area snobbish, then look to the inside the beltline crowd in Raleigh. I have a bunch of friends from there and they are snobs!...ha.

    Cary is just a nice family place to live,and if that makes us snobs,call me King Snob, otherwise get over it!

  • Alicat Apr 8, 2008

    They just keep sticking it to us with more "impact" what the heck?? Where is the benefit?

  • whatelseisnew Apr 8, 2008


    Tis sad tis sad. this is about money; nothing else. You can believe that this will eliminate future bonds. I am sure you will be quite astonished when the next one rolls out in a few months. The facts are this. The mayor and this council claims to want to slow growth. Two methods can be applied. take money from people or refuse permitting. As is typical they chose to take the money.

  • JustAName Apr 8, 2008

    "So, the city pays for nothing, and then they take over the streets, sidewalks, etc;" The city pays for the sewer/power/street lines that extend to the development. The town does not take over streets that are inside of developments, they can remain private. The street I live on is one of those non-maintained streets.

  • chfdcpt Apr 8, 2008

    I have mentioned this before. Can anyone show me of a place in which the so called impact fees have paid for what they were meant to? Orange County has had an impact fee for schools for about 15 years, and have yet to raise enough to build a school. That is the reason that they are asking for the property transfer fee.

    Impact fees don't help at all, and don't fall for it. The developer has to build everything (roads, sidewalks, water/sewer, electric) up to city standards before they are allowed to sell any homes. Additionally, the developer is paying for all the inspections done by the city. So, the city pays for nothing, and then they take over the streets, sidewalks, etc; in addition to the additional tax base created.

  • mmania Apr 8, 2008


    that people are jealous that their own towns have higher taxes, higher crime, fewer parks and recreation, etc...

    There you go again, seriously are you 12 or what? It has nothing ot do with jealousy. I have lived on the outskirts of Cary for a while now and what I see of Caryites is snobbish behavior. They think only of themselves and act as though they are entitled to do as they please. This is personal observation. Let me say again, what they do with their personal money is not for me to say, I just don't understand why the houses are getting bigger and bigger. I'm not one for extravagance and that's what I see. Bigger doesn't always mean better and quite frankly its obnoxious. That's not jealousy that is practicality.

  • davison Apr 8, 2008

    We built a house in Morrisville last year (Morrisville uses Cary water). Unfortunately, since it was not in a subdivision, was on a undeveloped cul de sac, it cost us $8,700 to get hooked up to sewer & water. I personally thought that was outrageous! And now they will get more?

  • cartman Apr 8, 2008


    First, I think the tunnel is a bad idea.

    The average house in the US (not just Cary) is increasing in size. People want bigger houses with more bathrooms, it's a national trend. People aren't moving to Cary just to find a bigger house, they could get a much bigger house for less money in Knightdale, they are moving to Cary due to the town.

    Houses are built because there is demand. There are developments in Cary that sold 30% of the lots before the first house was built, with prices starting at $450,000. People want those houses, and they want them in Cary. If you stop all building in Cary and Raleigh, where will people live? They will move to Garner, Clayton, Knightdale or any other place that has homes.

    I think Cary is a great town, and I gladly pay a premium to live there.

  • Leonardo Apr 8, 2008

    fatchanceimwrong: "The image that Cary projects is that it & it's residents are the upper-society compared to their neighbors, except for maybe Chapel Hill. Their neighbors feel that Cary residents look down their noses at them."

    How are they 'projecting' this image? Because they have low crime and low taxes? Maybe they can move some gangs into Cary to increase the crime and reduce property values...would that make you feel better?

    I'm sorry...but I think the 'they're looking down at you' thing is all in your head. The people of Cary (just like any other town) are too busy with their personal lives to even think about whether or not they're 'better' than other towns. People move to Cary because of the low taxes, low crime, nice parks, good schools, etc... I have a hard time believing people move to Cary so that they can look down on the people of Garner.

  • Leonardo Apr 8, 2008


    Talking out of both sides of my mouth? You're the one who brought up the topic of people being able to spend their own money when you said "I don't understand why people in Cary need so much house these days.".

    For the record, here's where I stand:
    1) Impact fees are a good way to pay for growth.
    2) The town has the right to build it's tunnel if the residents of Cary approve of it.
    3) People have the right to do whatever they wish with their personal money. If they want to build a huge McMansion, that's their right because it's THEIR money.
    4) From what I've seen (as an outside observer, I don't live in Cary), Cary gets bashed alot for no good reason. The only possible explanation I can come up with to explain this is that people are jealous that their own towns have higher taxes, higher crime, fewer parks and recreation, etc...