Mayors and planners across the state are lining up to oppose a bill that would require local governments to pay developers for right-of-way acquisition.
“We need to maintain the ability to require developers to dedicate that right of way – their developments contribute to creating the need, and we want them to contribute an equitable share of the costs of making those improvements. This bill would make it very challenging for local governments to finance road improvements,” said Gerald Green, executive director of the local planning commission.
Knox County’s residential housing market, the engine that drives the local economy, has bounced back from a long string of tough years, and those involved in building, regulating and counting the money are happy to put the recession years in the rear view mirror.
“We’re really pleased to see single family home construction recover so well,” said Dwight Van de Vate, Knox County’s senior director of engineering and public works. “Pre-recession, we would sometimes see almost 250 homes a month – clearly unsustainable. Then we cratered to a low of 35 one month. It’s been a wild ride. Now we have robust, fairly stable development, at levels we can manage. It’s a good place to be.”