In the last two years, Baltimore County developers received almost 1,000 exemptions from having to pay fees that would have gone toward building public infrastructure, generating far less money than the county expected to recoup.
Between January 2021 and December 2021, developers received 539 exemptions. The following year, between January 2022 and December 2022, they received 459 exemptions, for a total of 998 exemptions, according to data from the Baltimore County Planning Board.
The Baltimore County Council passed a law in 2019, first introduced by Councilman David Marks, imposing fees on new construction to offset the effects of development on public schools, sewers and roads, which has become more urgent as almost a third of Baltimore County public schools are at or over capacity.
But a series of carveouts rendered the impact fees law largely ineffective, as the county did not recoup any money in fiscal year 2023, and only netted about $14,000 in fiscal year 2022, far short of the $5.7 million Baltimore County expected to reap when the council passed the bill in spring 2019.
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