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February 20, 2014

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Well I'm sick and tired of paying this never ending "STORM WATER FEE" that was supposed to end after "5 years"...Well it still shows up and it DOUBLES our properties water bill because of the size of our parking lot.

"The rest of the price in rectangular box under the words "you owe" is for future maintenance and expansion."

Cite some hard evidence for this or it is just more builder BS. But I am willing to keep an open mind on it IF you have evidence.

Growth is not bad for El Paso. Just ask Cleveland or Detroit or Buffalo how much they'd like to have our growth. But growth here has not brought prosperity in the form of incomes that keep pace with the rest of the country.

David you are simply wrong on this issue. Admit it. The whole argument against impact fees just doesn't hold water. Your so called reasons just don't cut it. You know you have a losing argument when you keep flailing around for a response that makes sense.

Rotten Peppers you will never see the growth as long as the people running our economic development continue to do so. They don't care. They have said we are not ready for good paying jobs. Call center jobs are just fine though.

U; there is of growth here. Population, homes built (2,000-3,000 per year), percent of adults with 4-year degrees (still way behind US avg), household formation (people still get married here and have kids). The economy is more robust than is given credit, though heavily dependent on government and military.

Forget tech jobs that require highly skilled or college education because EP does not have these to offer a prospective employer, though it may some day.

I agree that the city and Borderplex don't get it. They are living and thinking in the 1970s. AAA is the best example of this and now I see MS is hiring hot dog jobs. Maybe Woody will hire Peppers?

The Fees are not a tax.

U,

I'm not sure how I can be "wrong" on this issue. Facts are facts and the fact that El Paso has put 3,000 or so new units on the ground every year for a while now with no negative impact is proof. Are you going to deny reality? The numbers are right there in front of you.

And it's a tax by the definition given by the US Supreme Court, tax think tanks on both sides of the fence and even in academia. Do you not have access to google so you can read for yourself?

Not only is it a tax, by the way. It's an extremely regressive tax.

Whether you are for, or against growth, you might need to brush up on the facts here.

Rotten,

The hard evidence that you are paying monthly for future maintenance is simple. If the PSB was simply billing people for what it cost them to operate they'd have zero money in reserve and no land holdings. Each month they'd bill for their exact operating costs and that's it.

Instead, they have millions upon millions in reserve because they readily admit that they need to money for improvements and maintenance. It's not me making this claim - it's the PSB.

Via email I was corrected that the PSB is triple dipping when you add in impact fees. You have what they bill rate payers monthly for expansion and maintenance, you have the land they bought in order to sell for expansion and maintenance and now you have impact taxes. How many different ways are they going to charge you for the same thing?

Of all people, I didn't think you'd be the lover of big government ripping off taxpayers.

DK, I have not seen PSB financials to judge. It would seem that the PSB would have to have a separate infrastructure fund and not have it all in one general fund. Then you could easily extrapolate when the fund will dry up given the number of annualized connections.

I agree the PSB should not be hoarding cash in excess of needs.

Any economists here? El Paso could benefit from having an independent think tank that looks at this kind of stuff, but not one funded by the builders and developers. IPED is not it.

Rotten Peppers,

the fact that growth with respect to new housing in El Paso pays for itself needs no economist to prove. It does pay for itself.

the question is whether or not you're a fan of urban sprawl. The anti urban sprawl crowd uses the growth argument even though the facts don't side with them. It's like the old myth that domestic abuse goes up on Super Bowl Sunday. It's wrong, but if said often enough people just accept it.

I like growth. I like cars and highways and people spread out. I need no argument other than that. And the anti-growth people just need to be honest - they want to deny others the shot at the American dream because they think all government should exist to promote them and their ideals individually.

Oh quit whining david its so beneath you.

David, you are just so wrong on this issue. EPWU does not have "millions and millions" in reserve. The money they take in pays for the water we use (infrastructure) as well as paying off the bonds that they issue to pay for the big ticket items. They do not budget to have left over funds for reserves. We do not have enough water to support super growth unless we jump ahead and start importing water from EPWU's "water ranches" near Valentine, TX. When that happens, you'll see water water bills quadruple. Get over it. You're getting incorrect information from someone about their financials.
I normally support you but you need to give this issue a rest. Do a little research about EPWU's budget and quit spreading false information.

U,

Your ad hominem attack on my factual presentation is beneath you and a sign that you've shut off your mind to reason.

The real question should be do we have enough water to sustain growth. 75% is used in agriculture and they think conservation is for the hippies in California. I mean, it's only a desert. Then there is Juarez.

As for DK's comment, "I like growth. I like cars and highways and people spread out. I need no argument other than that." Well, I hope there is something left for his children and grand children. That doesn't seem to factor into his thinking. But I know that here in Dumbfuckistan, most would agree with DK and buyers generally want the single-family detached home out in 79938-land.

just wonderin',

You are right about what they spend some of their money on. You overestimate just how much "infrastructure" they're actually putting in place or maintaining.

Of course, the bonds have to be paid off, but the very existence of those loans proves that they have a ton of money in reserve. The PSB borrowed money when money was cheap and they borrowed against their reserves. Everybody knows that you spend other people's money when you have the opportunity to.

What I think is interesting about your reprimand of me is that you have decided to take the government's word over the truths you can discern yourself (no to say that a former and current board member aren't feeding me everything I need to know here - because they are - I'm not incorrect on a single fact).

You really think El Paso is going to run out of water soon? You do know that was a myth that was debunked in the 90s. And El Paso has no chance at "super growth" We're talking 3,000 units a year maybe. Our "growth" is a fart in the wind compared to most other Texas communities.

Also, we will never get our water from Valentine. What are they going to do - truck it in? Laughable. Do you understand what kind of insane task it would be to pipe that water in? Again, you are believing the government when you should be using reason.

Now, if you don't like growth - just say it. There's no need to invent facts and call me a liar because you are uncomfortable with your position on the issue. Nobody can fault you for resisting change - it's a natural human reaction. However, do me a favor - don't spread government lies here. I really dislike that propaganda because it kills what little free thought we have left.

I think we can all agree that EPWU has done a very good job of planning for our water future unlike Dallas, Houston, Ft. Worth, San Antonio - all those cities are facing major water shortages in the future and that's why the last legislative session was so contentious about funding water development. We should be thankful that we had the leadership to address this problem long before the big cities in Texas did. They always hoped they would continue to get their 25-30-inches of rain year after year. Had we not addressed the issue this city would definitely be "dead in the water" for future development and growth.

As far as impact fees - I think they are unfair to the homebuyer - but its been the law since 1989 and cities could adopt impact fees or not. El Paso entered that game later than the other cities.

I still want someone to look at the last W&S projections for the last impact fee increase and see if those projections became reality. If not - how do we know if these projections are correct?

"Also, we will never get our water from Valentine. What are they going to do - truck it in?"

No, we're going to get a Woody Pipe from Dell City that will hostage the city to him for the next 500 years. The deal will be done in secret and show up on a CC agenda on a Thursday with 5 or 6 votes in the bag for it and a way to steal our right to a yes/no vote on the bonds that pay for it. It's just how it is done in El Paso and one of the main reasons no one wants to mover their business here.

As for we have enough water, we have enough salt water for sure and we do not have control over how Juarez consumes what fresh water is left, despite the good efforts of the EPWU to reduce per capita consumption here. But they have little control over agricultural use that is 75% of the total.

Don't listen to the builders or developers here because they are thieves and liars.

It seems Mother Nature is talking to the growers these days.

RP: because of your psychotic dislike of Foster and Hunt your comments are lost on the rest of us. You may be making good points - but I lose interest when you start trashing people. Stick to the subject and leave out the personal attacks.

That is all Rotten PP does - slander anyone who he/she feels demolished his/hers father's crooked city hall building that was supposed to be a shrine to his/her father, Ray Salazar. The building has been gone almost a year and he/she still cannot get over it. Too bad he/she doesn't realize what a dirty deal that city hall was.

As for impact fees, that amount of money is not going to make or break someone from buying a house. Be real. And as has been pointed out, some developers can stand to make a little less profit and still do well.

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