by Chris Halliday, Orangeville Banner
Any new wind turbines built in Dufferin won’t spin in the breeze for cheap, as they once did — at least in terms of development charges (DCs). As Dufferin revamps its DCs bylaw, county council plans to enter a brave new world where wind turbines and those charges meet. If approved next month, Dufferin could be the first municipality in Ontario to collect DCs based on a volumetric approach, which could land the county about $3,938 per turbine.
“My opinion is $4,000 isn’t a lot of money for a wind turbine,” said Orangeville Deputy Mayor Warren Maycock. “That’s what we should be asking.” Currently, Dufferin is eligible to collect DCs based on gross floor area (GFA) relating to wind turbine projects, which results in a $6.06 charge per square metre. Since wind turbines don’t occupy a large amount of space, the current model doesn’t add a lot to Dufferin’s coffers.
“Wind turbines generally have a small floor plate compared to a warehouse, a factory or a retail store for example,” said Jason Bevan of Hemson Consulting Limited. “The rates can be relatively small.” As Bevan explained, wind turbines weren’t really contemplated when the province’s Development Charges Act was implemented in 1997. As a result, municipalities across the province are beginning to charge more DCs for wind turbine projects.
“It is kind of a new area,” Bevan said. “Of course, many counties and area municipalities have been receiving applications over the last 10 years for wind turbines.” Read article