New businesses planning developments in Pearland will soon be required to pay a raised impact fee.

Impact fees allow the city to delegate half the cost of new construction for Pearland’s water and wastewater infrastructure to new developments. The fees lessen the burden from existing businesses and residents who would otherwise have to pay higher water and sewer rates, officials said.

The city of Pearland is required to update its impact fees every five years, and on April 10, City Council voted 5-2 with Council Members Alex Kamkar and Layni Cade dissenting to increase its impact fees from $6,477 to the maximum rate of a combined water and sewer fee of $9,625.

Interim City Manager Trent Epperson said the city will be moving to a meter-based impact fee, which officials said is more transparent to development.

Prior to the vote, Kamkar voiced objections to requiring businesses to pay the $9,625 impact fee and put forward a motion to raise the fee to only $8,000.

“I just don’t feel this is the appropriate time,” Kamkar said. “It wouldn't be prudent to raise this fee, especially for folks who want to do business here, or, in the case of some folks who are replatting, they’re already here.”

If the city chose to pursue a lower impact fee, additional revenues to maintain the city’s water and wastewater systems would need to be collected by raising rates for residents, Epperson said.