Friday, October 9, 2009

City of Vancouver Follows Leavitt's Lead, Suspends Fee Increases

Press Release issued today:

Vancouver, Wash. – On October 8, Vancouver City Manager Pat McDonnell released a statement that he will be asking the City Council to suspend previously approved fee increases for building permits and development review activities. In addition, the city's Transportation Department will ask City Council to forgo the annual adjustment to the Transportation Impact Fee (TIF) Program for 2010.

Vancouver City Councilman and Mayoral candidate Tim Leavitt commends McDonnell for taking these steps. Leavitt has been fighting for the creation of local jobs and business growth throughout his time on City Council. “It’s business in the private sector that creates jobs. We need to make it easier and less costly for potential employer to hire more of our residents,” said Leavitt, “this action makes the City of Vancouver a part of the solution, not a part of the problem.”

As recently as December 8, 2008, Leavitt argued against increases in Transportation Impact Fees, noting in his remarks during a Council workshop that raising fees is an action detrimental to bringing businesses and jobs to Vancouver. Said Leavitt during that meeting, “I submit, Council, that if we really want to make some bold decisions about increasing the attractiveness of our community to businesses … I think we really need to look at an alternative to the impact fee program.”

In this important election year, Councilman Leavitt is pleased to see his suggestions and directions take root, and looks forward to helping Vancouver create its own economic recovery.


transit supporter said...

Tim, I am a huge supporter but would like to hear your comments on last nights C-Tran board of directors decision to cut service (and jobs) in January.

Tim Leavitt said...

Thank you Transit Supporter for posting.

That decision was not an easy one, no doubt.

The 15% drop in sales tax revenues this year have put CTRAN in a bad spot, like most other public agencies.

The actions by the Board I think reflect a belief that the proposed modifications were the least impactful to both riders and employees.

Good news is that Staff will continue to monitor sales tax revenues and look for ways to bolster service and bring back those employees that are going to be let go.

I made it clear that I expect those employees that are let go should be in a 'furlough' position…and be the first to be hired back on as soon as possible.

I don't think anybody on the Board was happy having to make a decision that resulted in some layoffs. Hopefully, the economy will improve sooner than later so CTRAN can return to full force.

Thanks again for posting.

Do keep in touch.