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Growth fees may help pay to build homeless shelter
homeless tent 1

Fees charged against new homes as well as commercial and industrial growth could be used to help pay for a shelter and/or navigation center for Manteca’s homeless.

Acting City Manager Miranda Ludlow Tuesday asked Megan Quinn of the Harris & Associates firm that is conducting a nexus study to update government facilities fees to explore whether that was a legal use to impose a fee of new growth to help pay for.

Quinn at Tuesday’s special council meeting said while that seemed like a legal use that she’d have to research to make sure it could be done.

City Council members did  not include a homeless shelter or such as a cost they wanted to charge off against growth although it did open the door to do so if Quinn confirms it is legal and the council wants to have that included with a financial analysis that would assign growth’ share of the cost of other government facilities.

Ludlow’s request is a follow through on staff’s commitment to explore all financial options the city could pursue to secure either a drop in shelter or a navigation/resource center for homeless to keep potential impact on the general fund at a minimum.

Currently staff is doing due diligence on the council’s direction to pursue purchase of the Qualex building at 555 Industrial Park Drive for such purposes.

It is likely to cost $1.5 million to purchase the building based on an appraisal done in 2019. It would also cost the city funds to replace the roof and do other site upgrades and building renovations to convert the former photo processing plant so it can house homeless programs.

Ludow’s inquiry is also a nod to the fact the need for the city to provide facilities to address homeless issues will likely be an ongoing concern.

The library facilities — along with a new city hall, a new police station, a second senior center, a community center, a water division office at the wastewater treatment plant, and a public works corporation yard for streets, parks and facilities — were identified by the council as projects they want included in a nexus study needed to update the existing government facilities fee.

The current fee assessed on growth — its $4,775 for a typical tract home — was established in 2006 after determining the initial fee of $350 put in place in 1986 was woefully inadequate.

The nexus Harris & Associates is conducting determines the square footage needed and the cost in current dollars for facilities the council wants included. They then take the projected population those facilities would serve and determine growth’s share and the portion that falls on the back of existing residents. When the last nexus was done, the city could justify new growth being charged for just over 60 percent of the cost. That was based on a city of 147,000 at build-out with a population in 2006 of 62,000.

Manteca has added 23,000 residents since then.

The government facilities fee account had a $19.5 million balance as of June 2019.


To contact Dennis Wyatt, email