[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Saugerties as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 5-16-2005 by L.L. No. 4-2005]
The purpose of this article is to allow for reimbursement to the Village for the actual costs of consulting services with respect to the review of applications before its various boards and commissions for approval to utilize any property in the Village. The Village has found that, in many instances where it would otherwise be appropriate, it fails to avail itself of expert consulting services because of the cost to the taxpayers in general. It is felt that it is more appropriate for the individual applicants to bear the cost of the review of their application in a manner which will assist the various boards and commissions of the Village in appropriately evaluating the potential impacts of those applications and how the applications fit within the Village's Comprehensive Plan and ordinances.
Notwithstanding any inconsistent provision of any local code, rule, regulation, law or ordinance, any Village board or commission (reviewing board) where a permit or approval is required by local law, rule, regulation or ordinance shall, before permitting use of or construction on, under or adjacent to real property, require the applicant to deposit funds with the Village sufficient to reimburse the Village for all reasonable costs of planning, engineering, legal, architectural, accounting and/or other consultants deemed appropriate by each reviewing board utilized in connection with the review of any application. At the time of the first hearing or appearance on the application, the reviewing board shall fix the amount of the initial deposit (escrow) to be made by the applicant. The Village's consultants shall invoice the Village no less frequently than monthly for services in reviewing each application and performing their duties with respect to such application. If at any time during the review process the amount of the escrow account falls below 50% of the initial escrow (as determined by the reviewing board), then the applicant shall be required to submit an additional deposit to bring the total escrow up to the full amount of the initial deposit (as determined by the reviewing board) unless the reviewing board otherwise waives such requirement.
In the event the amount held in escrow by the Village is more than the amount of the actual billing or invoicing, the difference between such amount and the actual billing or invoicing shall be promptly refunded to the applicant after final action is taken on the application.
In the event the amount of escrow is less than the full amount actually charged by the Village's consultants, the applicant shall promptly pay any remaining balance.
All invoices for fees charged to applicants by consultants shall be reviewed and approved by the Village Board of Trustees as to reasonableness before payment by the Village, and the applicant shall be provided with copies of the invoices charged against the escrow deposit. In the event an applicant believes that the charges invoiced are excessive, the applicant may file a written protest to the Village Board of Trustees, within 15 days of receipt of the invoice, questioning such invoice, and the Board of Trustees shall review the protest by the applicant and provide the applicant with a written response within 15 days of receipt of the protest.
In the event an applicant fails to make any escrow payment required and/or fails to pay the full amount billed for consultant fees (as approved by the Village Board of Trustees), the reviewing board shall adjourn any pending application and/or withhold final approval until such payment is made. In the event final approval has been granted and an outstanding balance for consulting fees (as approved by the Village Board of Trustees) remains unpaid, the Building Inspector shall not grant a building permit and/or certificate of occupancy until payment of approved outstanding consulting fees has been made in full.
All laws, ordinances, rules and regulations of the Village of Saugerties are modified and superseded by this article with respect to their application to fees which may be charged with respect to applications for land use permitting or approvals.
This article shall notify and supersede, with respect to the properties covered thereby, the provisions of Article 7 of the Village Law of the State of New York, Executive Law Article 42, and Navigation Law Article 4 of the State of New York.