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Manteca may cut fire fees 16%
City needs $9.1M in fire stations, engines by 2031

Manteca may reduce fees collected on new residential growth for fire facilities by $100 for a typical 2,000-square-foot home.

The City Council on Tuesday will consider reducing the fee by just over 16 percent on new homes when they meet at 7 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St.

The fee was last adjusted in 2000 when it was raised to 30 cents per square foot. It is being proposed to be lowered to 25 cents per square foot.

Other fees before the council include:

• Creating a multiple-family per unit fee of 29 cents per square foot. Currently apartments and duplexes are charged the same fee as single family homes.

• Increasing commercial fees from 13 to 18 cents per square foot.

• Establishing office fees at 24 cents per square foot. Currently offices are charged the same fee as commercial.

• Increasing industrial fees from 3 cents to 9 cents per square foot.

The new fee structure is the result of an extensive city-wide review of fees to make sure the cost of providing services matched what the city was charging. In some cases, fees have increased and in others they have decreased.

The new fees compare well with nearby jurisdictions. Lathrop, for example, charges 35 cents per square foot for both commercial and industrial. The commercial rate is twice Manteca’s while the industrial rate is four times the Manteca fee.

The only cities lower than Manteca’s proposed rates for non-residential - Stockton and Modesto - have not updated their fees since 1988 and 2003, respectively. Modesto is the only nearby jurisdiction that would be charging less for a single family home when compared with Manteca.

The new fee will generate $7.1 million toward the $9.1 million tab for two fire stations as well as purchasing an engine and equipping it for each station.

The city currently has $1.5 million available in the fire facility fee account. The remaining gap is expected to be covered by the future sale of the former Carpenter’s union hall at Louise Avenue and Union Road that Manteca bought several years ago with the idea of converting it to a fire station. Those plans have since been dropped.

The tab would have been higher but Pulte Homes - the developers of Del Webb at Woodbridge - has already donated the land for the next fire station on Lathrop Road west of Union Road to the city. ANF Development years ago donated the city for the fifth station at Woodward Avenue and Atherton Drive to the city.

The design work for the Lathrop Road station has been completed. It has a $3.5 million cost in constant 2011 dollars to build and furnish it. The fifth station at Woodward and Atherton has the same price tag.

The fee nexus covers purchasing four fire engines plus four utility vehicles at a combined cost of $1.9 million.

The next station will be built next to Del Webb in order to reduce response times to more than 2,000 homes as well as to serve the new CenterPoint Business Park.

The Woodward station will also serve the new Austin Road Business Park.