New, revised fees approved for plan reviews in Shores

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published July 24, 2014

GROSSE POINTE SHORES — Officials hope a new fee schedule that includes some new fees for residents hoping to renovate their homes will help the city to cover its own costs associated with using municipal planners to review such proposals.

The Shores City Council voted unanimously July 15 in favor of the revised fee schedule, which City Manager Mark Wollenweber said is comparable to fees charged by neighboring Grosse Pointes for the same purposes. The fees include site plan reviews for a single family residential lot, with fees ranging from $500 for a home less than 2,500 square feet to $900 for a home that’s 4,001 square feet and larger. And at the behest of the Shores Planning Commission, which discussed the revised fees during a meeting June 24, Wollenweber said they include lower rates for less extensive reviews, such as a $250 fee for a minor review for an accessory structure such as a fence or generator, and $500 for a major review of the same.

He said the Planning Commission was “in favor of a smaller fee for simple projects” and a higher fee for bigger ones.

The Shores recently hired a new planning firm after losing its longtime planner to a different position, but Wollenweber said all of the planners they talked to recommend a fee schedule like this one.

Wollenweber said the city was recouping some of its costs through permitting fees, but not all of the expenses associated with using planners.

“This makes us whole by paying the consultant,” he told the council.

Mayor Ted Kedzierski said the Shores anticipates generating roughly another $10,000 annually as a result of the revised fees.

“The thrust is to recover our costs, not to make a windfall,” he said.

The fees listed by the city are the maximum ones a resident or developer can expect to incur. Wollenweber said if the review takes less time, the fee could be lower than what’s listed.