The Fresno City Council approved an updated agreement with Campus Pointe developers Thursday that excludes a refund of roughly half a million dollars that the council was expected to vote on Dec. 2.
A previous version of the agreement — which was on the Dec. 2 City Council agenda — requested that the city refund Kashian Enterprises roughly half a million dollars related to park and police impact developer fees. Councilmember Tyler Maxwell, who sponsored the item, said the draft agreement was put on the Dec. 2 agenda by mistake.
The updated agreement excludes the $517,000 reimbursement in developer fees but waives police impact fees for new Kashian developments at Campus Pointe moving forward, according to Maxwell. It was unanimously approved on the council’s consent calendar.
“Really what I’m focused on is what I think is the best solution, which is to amend the contract to prevent double paying for services moving forward,” said Maxwell, explaining the reason for considering the refund and how the agreement will help bring more development to the area.
“I think every developer should always pay their fair share; I’ve often voiced that opinion,” Maxwell said. “But I also don’t think they should be strong-armed.”
Mayor Jerry Dyer supports the new agreement and said he was concerned that the previously proposed refund would have set a poor precedent for the city. Dyer added that the city should continue to find ways to incentivize new housing, including waiving impact fees.
“We are starving for housing, especially affordable housing,” he said. “Demand has far exceeded supply. We need new incentives.”
The approved agreement specifies that Campus Pointe is served primarily by the Fresno State Campus Police, not the Fresno Police Department.
However, in the past the developers have had to pay the city police impact development fees on top of paying Fresno State for police services.
Under the modified agreement, Fresno Police could still respond in the case of major events. In those instances, the city could bill Fresno State, which would then bill Campus Pointe for the services.
“I don’t think it’s right to be double charged for a service, especially if you are not receiving that service from the city of Fresno,” Maxwell said. “I was going back and forth on several ways to right that wrong, to remedy. … Going forward they would not have to be paying duplicative police services.”
The city has a few established programs to waive development impact fees for certain types of projects deemed to have economic benefits, including industrial parks and developments in neighborhoods with low-income residents.
Impact fees for new residential developments in Fresno are among some of the lowest in the state, according to a 2019 report by the Terner Center for Housing Innovation at UC Berkeley. Their research found that a developer pays nearly $6,000 per home in impact fees in Fresno, compared with $8,500 in Sacramento and $24,000 in Oakland.