[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Buchanan as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 2-7-2011 by L.L. No. 9-2011]
The title of this article shall be "Fees," and it shall affect all present and future local laws, boards, commissions and public agencies within the jurisdictional limits of the Village of Buchanan.
It has been found that the procedure for amending various fees and fee schedules through the enactment of local laws is both time consuming and economically unfeasible. The Village of Buchanan enacts the following article for the efficient, orderly and prompt adjustment of all Village fees by Village Board of Trustees resolution.
As used in this article, the following words shall have the following meanings:
- The Village of Buchanan Board of Trustees.
- Any lawful charge pursuant to the Code of the Village of Buchanan, including but not limited to permit and special permit fees, license fees or any charge or disbursement required by a duly constituted board, consultant or committee of the Village of Buchanan.
All fees imposed by the Village of Buchanan may, from time to time, be adjusted by resolution of the duly enacted Board to reflect either an increase or decrease.
After enactment of a resolution pursuant to § 90-4 of this article, said resolution shall be filed with the Village Clerk. Copies will be forwarded to all applicable boards, committees, and department heads of the Village. It shall be the responsibility of the Village Clerk to maintain an official record of all Village fees and changes thereto.
Any provisions of the Village Code with any reference to fees shall be interpreted so as to mean that the provisions of this article shall pertain thereto, and this article shall supersede any other provisions for fees charged and collected by the Village of Buchanan in the Village Code.
[Adopted 7-5-2011 by L.L. No. 11-2011]
In connection with any application to the Village for a site plan, special permit or subdivision, zoning amendment, variance as described in Chapters 171 and 211 and, at the discretion of the Village, for permits required by the Village of Buchanan Code, including permits sought in conjunction with flood damage prevention in accordance with Chapter 97, a steep slopes work permit in accordance with Chapter 165, a soil disturbances and excavations work permit in accordance with Chapter 159, and a permit to perform regulated activity in a wetland in accordance with Chapter 203, or a tree removal appeal, or in connection with any other application when the Village deems it necessary to retain a consultant regarding the application, the Village may require an applicant to deposit an initial sum of money into an escrow account in advance of the review of the application. Said sum shall be based on the estimated cost to the Village of reviewing the particular type of application before it. The reviewing board or person may consider the professional review expenses incurred by neighboring municipalities in reviewing similar applications.
Use of funds.
Said sum of money shall be used to cover the reasonable and necessary costs of reviewing an application. Costs may include staff costs or consultant fees for planning, engineering, legal and other professional and technical services required for the proper and thorough review of an application. The reviews governed by this section shall include all environmental review pursuant to law, including review of the proposed action under the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA).
Editor's Note: See Art. 8 of the Environmental Conservation Law.
The review expenses provided for herein are in addition to application or administrative fees required pursuant to other sections of the Buchanan Village Code. Monies deposited by application pursuant to this section shall not be used to offset the Village's general expenses of professional services for the several boards of the Village or its general administrative expenses.
Fees charged strictly as a result of SEQRA review shall in no event exceed the maximum amounts that can be charged pursuant to the SEQRA regulations by the lead agency.
Upon receipt of monies requested for an escrow account, the Village Administrator shall cause such monies to be placed in a separate interest-bearing account in the name of the Village and shall keep a separate record of all such monies deposited and the name of the applicant and project for which such sums were deposited.
Upon receipt and approval by the Village Board of itemized vouchers from consultants for services rendered on behalf of the Village regarding a particular application, the Village Administrator shall cause such vouchers to be paid out of the monies so deposited and shall debit the separate record of such account accordingly. The consultant shall make copies of such vouchers available to the applicant at the same time the vouchers are submitted to the Village.
The Village Board shall review and audit all such vouchers and shall approve payment of only such consultant charges as are reasonable in amount and necessarily incurred by the Village in connection with the review and consideration of applications. A charge or part thereof is reasonable in amount if it bears a reasonable relationship to the average charge by consultants to the Village for services performed in connection with the review of a similar application. In auditing the vouchers, the Village Board may take into consideration the size, type and number of buildings to be constructed, the topography of the site at issue, environmental conditions at such site, the infrastructure proposed in the application and any special conditions the Village Board may deem relevant. A charge or part thereof is necessarily incurred if it was charged by the consultant for a service which was rendered in order to protect or promote the health, safety or other vital interests of the residents of the Village and to protect public or private property from damage.
If at any time during the processing of an application there shall be insufficient monies on hand to the credit of an applicant to pay the approved vouchers in full, or if it shall reasonably appear to the reviewing board that such monies will be insufficient to meet vouchers yet to be submitted, the reviewing board shall cause the applicant to deposit additional sums as the board deems necessary or advisable in order to meet such expenses or anticipated expenses.
In the event the applicant fails to deposit the requested review fees into an escrow account, any application review, approval, permit or certificates of occupancy may be withheld or suspended by the reviewing board, officer or employee of the Village until such monies are deposited.
Upon completion of the review of an application, or upon the withdrawal of an application, and after all fees already incurred by the Village have been paid and deducted from the escrow account, any balance remaining in the escrow account shall be refunded within 60 days after the applicant's request.
This article shall be applicable to all applications pending at the time it shall become effective, unless the reviewing board shall determine that its application would be impracticable, unfair or unjust in the particular circumstances.
Any provisions of the Village of Buchanan Code with any reference to reimbursement for professional consulting services shall be interpreted so as to mean that the provisions of this article shall pertain thereto, and this article shall supplement any other provisions for reimbursement for professional consulting services in the Village Code.