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Local News

Joliet council to vote on higher development, building fees

The Joliet City Council will vote Tuesday on a $130,000 grant for Catholic Charities' Daybreak Center, which would be used for a new roof and dorm bathroom exhaust at its Cass Street facility.
The Joliet City Council will vote Tuesday on a $130,000 grant for Catholic Charities' Daybreak Center, which would be used for a new roof and dorm bathroom exhaust at its Cass Street facility.

The Joliet City Council votes Tuesday on an assortment of fee hikes affecting developers, contractors, businesspeople and homeowners.

The higher fees are already built into the proposed 2020 budget and are expected to raise an additional $162,000.

They include more than 20 different fees, including zoning reclassifications, driveway permits and sign permits.

Joliet has not increased the fees under consideration since 2001, and used “regional averages” found in other communities to develop the new fee structure, interim City Manager Steve Jones told the City Council at a workshop session on Monday.

The fees in Joliet were compared with nine communities – Aurora, Elgin, Lemont, Lockport, Orland Park, Shorewood, New Lenox, Plainfield and Naperville.

Joliet would be “in line with the regional average” with the fee increases, according to a staff memo.

Some of the proposed fee increases include:

• Applications for annexation and development agreements rising from $500 to $1,000;

• Applications for special use permits going from $235 to $500;

• Applications for ground signs, now at $30.50, and wall signs, now at $19.50, would go to $150; temporary sign fees would stay at $50;

• Permits for driveways, fences, decks, sheds and patios, all at $50, would go to $65;

• A new fee of $65 for above-ground pool permits.

The fee increases are coming at a time that the city also is increasing the cost of building permits, which would rise from the current rate of $6.25 per $1,000 of construction value to $10 per $1,000 of value.

The hike in building permit fees is expected to generate an additional $722,000 for the city next year.

Council members made no comments on the proposed fees at the Monday meeting.

HUD grants

The council on Tuesday also will vote on $255,000 in federal Community Development Block Grant funds for Catholic Charities’ Daybreak Center and the Spanish Community Center.

Catholic Charities in March appealed to the council for funding in light of Daybreak Center, a homeless shelter on Cass Street, losing $250,000 in funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Daybreak Center will get $130,000 to be used for a new roof and dorm bathroom exhaust for its Cass Street facility.

The Spanish Community Center will get $125,000, also for a new roof, as well as plumbing repairs at its building on Eastern Avenue.

Joliet administers the CDBG funding designated by HUD for community organizations that provide public services for the poor.

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