As the York school district looks toward having impact fees approved to support record growth, it begs the question, how effectively have these fees been used in surrounding communities? 

1. Were they used as intended to pay down capital projects specified in the study used to request the impact fees?

2. Did the impact fees offset taxes for residents & small businesses?

A common campaign slogan around here, “Let new growth pay for new growth” is hard to argue against. Certainly, this slogan is a net cast widely by Politicians over voters looking to limit rampant growth that overburdens existing infrastructure. Traffic anyone?
Take for example the Fort Mill School district impact fees that weighed in at nearly $18,000 per single family and $15,000 per multi-family new construction. Now, How these fees are determined is another of life’s curiosities, but that story is for another day.
Similar to the videos of meteors hitting some far away planet, the Fort Mill impact fee was much anticipated, but apparently hit the dark side of the moon…because nobody can see the positive impact. 
So how did a school board increase the amount paid by the taxpayers of  Fort Mill, by using a capital project to boost the impact fee that does not meet the criteria to be paid with impact fees. Only a Catawba Ridge varsity defense could be as difficult to solve as this puzzle.
But rest easy, if you paid 18 large for your new home construction, apparently a simple tail wag of the dog can remedy the problem. Massive piles of your unused tax dollars make me think BANK to the days OF YORK. Do banks make campaign contributions? I bet they can make a little spare change off of nearly $50 million sitting around for a few years. Maybe as much as the STATE HOME BUILDERS could have made with the same amount, but we may never know.
Anyway, if you are ok with the idea of waiting on Columbia to change a law so that your community can use your impact fees for the purpose they were to be used for…you may need to send the school board that advocated such a ruse to Columbia (send the tail to wag the dog). Of course then you have to ask yourself…what other IMPACTS can be expected at the state level. Inquiring banks want to know?
No worries though, if you live in York and proposed impact fees are approved, you could be the proud owners of the same amazing tax decreases as the citizens of Fort Mill. Of course that impact must have hit the back side of the moon too…because nobody has seen it either.

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