San Antonio City Council unanimously voted May 16 to increase impact fee rates for future residential developments that will use the city’s water and sewer services.

The background

City staffers told council members it was time to update 5-year-old impact fees contained in the city’s land use assumption and capital improvements plans within the San Antonio Water System service area.

Texas law requires a city or county government to assess its one-time impact fees every five years to help local utilities offset the cost of capital improvements that are done to support new development.

Fees also factor in such things as population projections, city staffers said, adding that they estimate the population of the SAWS service area growing from 2 million to 2.5 million by 2033.

SAWS officials said impact fee revenues help to support long-range water utility initiatives, such as water storage and recovery operations.

Dig deeper

The current impact fee for combined water and sewer connections for an average San Antonio single-family home ranges from $5,902 to $8,548.

According to local officials, beginning in July, the water and sewer impact fee for a new single-family house will range from $7,343 to $11,528, depending on the size and location of the residency, reflecting an average 23% increase.

City officials said developers in northwest San Antonio will encounter the biggest impact fee rate hike at 35% for every new service connection because of the higher elevations in that part of SAWS’ service area.

SAWS’ Capital Improvement Advisory Committee, which includes representatives of the local development community, helped to determine the new impact fee rates, which were passed and recommended by the SAWS board for council approval.