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Meeting Date: August 13, 2002

Subject/Title: Approve a resolution adopting the 2002/03 Cost Allocation Plan & Schedule of City Fees

Submitted by: Pamela Ehler, Director of Finance & Information Systems

Approved by: John Stevenson, City Manager

Approve a Resolution adopting the 2002/2003 Cost Allocation Plan, and revising the City’s Service Fees.

In April of 2000 the City contracted with DMG-Maximus to update current city fees & charges. DMG-Maximus worked with city staff in Community Development, Engineering, Parks & Recreation, and Police in order to develop a system for updating the fee-for-service charges provided by these departments. City staff provided information relating to the actual time it takes to produce or complete each user fee or permit service. The hourly rate calculations were applied to the actual time estimates to come up with a total cost of providing each user fee activity. The total costs were then compared to the current fees to yield an over or under-recovery of costs. Fees can then be adjusted up or down to equal cost. A Model was developed to calculate these fees. 

On November 14, 2000 the Cost Allocation Plan/User Fee Study prepared by DMG-Maximus was adopted and approved for implementation by the City Council. 

On September 11, 2001, the City Council adopted the 2001/2002 Cost Allocation Plan and revised the City’s Service Fees.

State law requires that fees be reasonably related to the actual cost of providing the service. The purpose of a cost allocation plan is to conform to state law and to have a method to recover direct and indirect costs associated with providing services and establish a framework for computing fees and charges. The Cost Allocation Plan computes two overhead factors, departmental and citywide, both of which are applied against direct costs to determine the total cost of providing a given unit of service. Departmental and citywide overhead factors are based on the distribution of expenditure categories including personnel, operating and ongoing capital costs. 

Fee Changes:
• Copies increased to $0.20 each. This is a justifiable increase due to increased costs.

• The business license application fee increased from $25.00 to $30.00. The fee is recommended to more accurately reflect the cost associated with the initial review and processing of the application.

• A new fee of $20.00 has been added to defray the costs associated with the issuance of a duplicate business tax certificate.

• Agenda packet subscriptions have been increased from $105.81 to $350.00 in order to recover the cost of supplies and staff time to copy the agenda.

• The passport execution fee has been increased from $15.00 to $30.00 as directed by United States Passport Services.

• Election binder deposit in the amount of $10.00 has been added to Administrative Fees.

• The Planning Division’s special services fee of $211.62 per dwelling unit has been lowered to $82.00 per dwelling unit to more accurately reflect cost recovery for the services.

• A new police fee has been added to recover actual costs for special event/response. 

• A late fee charge of $20.00 was added for Youth Sports. 

• Administrative Citations have increased in order to recover costs associated with the administrative citation process.

• Peer review, as approved by City Council on May 22, 2001, has been added to the Cost Allocation Plan.

• Solid Waste special charges for disposing of Televisions, Microwaves, and BBQ’s have been added.

• A water reconnect charge of $20.00 has been increased to $30.00.

• All other fees were increased by the annual CPI (2.1%) or remained the same.

Additionally, the Parks and Recreation Department is working with the Finance Department to finish a department wide fee study that will be brought back to City Council to adjust all fees as necessary. 

The City will review and update the fees and charges on an annual basis. Fees are proposed to be adjusted at the beginning of each fiscal year by the annual changes to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). This year’s Consumer Price Index was 2.1%. DMG-Maximus recommends that the overall time estimates be reviewed/revised every three to five years.

Not known at this time

• Resolution



WHEREAS, Government Code Sections 65104, 65909.5, 66014 and 66451.2 allow the City to establish fees to offset the City’s administrative costs in processing permits, licenses, subdivision maps and entitlements; and

WHEREAS, Brentwood Municipal Code § 17.800 requires payment of such processing fees in conjunction with any application submitted for permits, licenses, subdivision maps and entitlements; and

WHEREAS, on November 10, 1998 the City Council previously adopted Resolution No. 98-195 to establish processing fees, which is now outdated; and 

WHEREAS, on May 28, 2002, the City Council adopted the 2002/03 – 2006/07 Capital Improvement Program which is an integral part of the overall system of public facility development; and

WHEREAS, the City Council has periodically revised development impact fees for public facilities, including the most recent revisions contained in Resolution 2366 adopted on September 11, 2001; and

WHEREAS, the City has compiled certain Cost Allocation Plans, the most recent of which was adopted September 11, 2001, to compare direct and indirect administrative costs in providing various services to the community; and

WHEREAS, the City retained DMG-Maximus to work with City staff to review the City’s Cost Allocation Plan and processing fees; and

WHEREAS, City Finance Department researched and developed the Cost Allocation Plan and City Fees, Fiscal Year 2002/03 report, which develops a model for computing fees to cover the City’s direct and indirect (overhead) administrative costs incurred in response to requests for permits, maps, licenses and entitlements, and which proposes a revised schedule of such fees; and

WHEREAS, the Report and supporting data were available for public inspection and review for ten (10) days prior to this public hearing; and 

WHEREAS, a public hearing has been noticed and held in accordance with Government Code Section 66018; and

WHEREAS, the City Council has considered the information provided to it by those testifying, and has reviewed and considered the information provided in the staff report and staff presentation and has read and considered the Report and supporting data.


Section 1. Findings:

The Council makes each of the following findings:

A. The purpose of the processing fees is to support those City services which are undertaken as a direct or indirect result of members of the public using the services of the City, in particular the services of permits, licenses, subdivision maps and entitlements.

B. After considering the Report and supporting data and the testimony received at this public hearing, the Council approves and adopts the 2002/03 Cost Allocation Plan and the Report, and incorporates them herein, and further finds that future development in the City of Brentwood will generate a continued need for the services specified in the Report.

C. The Report and the testimony establish:

1. That there is a reasonable relationship between the need for the fee and the type of service for which the fee is imposed; and

2. That there is a reasonable relationship between the amount of the fee and the estimated reasonable cost of providing the type of service for which the fee is imposed; and

3. The amount of service provided does not exceed what is reasonably necessary in order to process the requested service;

4. That the cost estimates set forth in the 2002/03 Cost Allocation Plan and the Report are reasonable and best approximate the direct and indirect (overhead) costs of City staff and consultants for providing the necessary service to respond to the public’s requests

D. The method of allocating the City’s administrative costs of processing service bears a fair and reasonable relationship to each member of the public’s burden on, and benefit from, the services requested by that member.

E. The fees do not exceed the estimated reasonable cost of providing the service for which the fee is charged.

Section 2. Fees Imposed:

A. Each person requesting a service in the City of Brentwood for which a fee is imposed pursuant to the Report shall pay the processing fee set forth in the Report. 

B. On July 1 of each year, the fees shall be automatically adjusted by an amount equal to the percentage of increase or decrease in the consumer price index for this region, as last computed before the July 1 date.

C. The fees may also be adjusted if the City updates or modifies the Cost Allocation Plan or the Report and conducts a public hearing to implement a new or revised fee or fees based upon such update or modification.

D. The applicable fee shall be determined on the basis of the fee schedule in effect at the time the application is submitted to the City for the requested service. The fee shall be payable in full at the time the application is submitted.

E. The adoption of this Resolution does not affect the ability of the City to request an agreement between the applicant and the City to pay extraordinary processing costs and to establish deposit accounts.

F. Notwithstanding anything to the contrary herein, the fee for copying public records requested by a member of the public, shall not exceed the direct costs of duplication.

Section 3. Fee Adjustment or Waiver or Reimbursement: 

A person subject to the fee imposed pursuant to this Resolution may apply to the City Council for adjustment to that fee, or a waiver of that fee, or reimbursement of part or all of the fee, solely by following the written protest procedure in the time and manner provided by Government Code Section 66020 and detailing the reasons for the adjustment, waiver or reimbursement.

A. A person subject to the fees imposed pursuant to this Resolution that desires an adjustment or waiver of such fees shall follow the protest procedure contained in Government Code Section 66020 (as may be amended), and within the time frame set forth in subsection (d) thereof (as may be amended) or risk the loss of the legal ability to request such adjustment or waiver. In no event shall the City waive its right to rely on other applicable limitations periods, including without limitation those set forth in Government Code Section 66022 (as may be amended).

B. A person may apply to the City Council for an adjustment to the fees by filing an application with the City Clerk. The application shall be made in writing and must identify the reasons why the City’s processing fees should be adjusted. At a minimum, the reasons should explain why a reasonable relationship is lacking between the service provided by the City, the costs incurred by the City for such service and the fees imposed by the City for such service.

C. The application shall be filed with the City Clerk no later than the deadline for filing protests as mentioned in subpart A. above. The City Clerk will present the application to the City’s Finance Director or designee.

D. The City’s Finance Director, or designee, shall make a written determination on the application. The City’s Finance Director, or designee, may authorize an adjustment so long as the adjustment does not exceed Ten Percent of the total amount of fees sought to be imposed by the City. Recommendations by the City’s Finance Director, or designee, for adjustments in excess of Ten Percent will be forwarded to the City Council for final determination. The method and timing of implementing the adjustment is subject to the discretion of the City’s Finance Director (or designee) or City Council where applicable.

E. Any adjustment granted is limited to the project as proposed. If there is any change in the project, the fee adjustment is suspended so that the City’s Finance Director, or City Council where applicable, may re-evaluate where the adjustment is still appropriate.

F. Decisions of the City’s Finance Director, or designee, are subject to appeal to the City Council so long as such appeal is made in writing and within 10 days of the decision.

Section 4. Use of Fee Revenues:

The revenues raised by payment of these fees, along with any interest earned, shall be used to pay for the City’s administrative costs spelled out in the Report, including without limitation the capital costs and labor and contract costs directly or indirectly associated with providing the requested service. 

Section 5. Subsequent Analysis of the Fees: 

The fees established herein are adopted and implemented by the Council in reliance on the comprehensive studies that have been prepared by the City and consultants to the City. During the coming years, the City will continue to gather additional information that may affect the nature, scope and type of services to be provided in response to requests of the public. Notwithstanding any term or condition of any permit, subdivision map, license or entitlement granted by the City, it is existing policy that the City Council may revise the fees to incorporate the findings and conclusions of further studies, as well as increases due to inflation, and that such revisions shall apply to any prior approved projects, as well as new projects.

Section 6. Effective Date of Revised Fees: 

The fees shall be effective sixty (60) days after the adoption of this Resolution; provided, however, that, upon enactment of this Resolution, any person may pay the revised fees instead of the current fees. 

Section 7. Severability: 

Each component of the fees and all portions of this Resolution are severable. Should any individual component of the fee or other provision of this Resolution be adjudged to be invalid and unenforceable, the remaining provisions shall be and continue to be fully effective, and the fee shall be fully effective except as to that portion that has been judged to be invalid. 

Section 8. Repeal of Inconsistent Resolutions

Resolution No. 2366 is hereby repealed.

Section 9. Exemption from California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA):

The City Council finds that CEQA does not apply to the adoption of this Resolution, pursuant to Sections 15061 and 15273 of the State CEQA Guidelines because: 

A. The fees established by this Resolution will be collected for the purposes of meeting operational expenses and maintaining service to those that request it; and 

B. Because the fees authorized by this Resolution will be collected at the application stage of the project, CEQA review will take place during the processing of the project. Therefore, it can be seen with certainty that the adoption of this Resolution establishing processing fees will not have a significant effect on the environment.

Section 10. Statute of Limitations: 

Any judicial action or proceeding to attack, review, set aside, void, or annul the fees established by this Resolution, or the Resolution itself, shall be commenced within one hundred twenty (120) days of the passage of this Resolution. Any action to attack an adjustment adopted pursuant to Sections 2 or 5 shall be commenced within one hundred twenty (120) days of the adjustment. 

PASSED, APPROVED AND ADOPTED by the City Council of the City of Brentwood at a regular meeting held August 13, 2002 by the following vote:

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