House Passes Legislation Addressing Land Development Bonding Issues

The North Carolina House last week passed legislation that would enact substantive reforms in the development bonding process, a common headache for both commercial and residential developers in many jurisdictions across the state.

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OUR VIEW: State Should End Protest Petitions; They Distort the Public Good

This commentary is one part of a pro/con package. The opposing view: Don’t Scrap Protest Petitions, a Vital Tool Against Harmful Rezonings.

Originally published on UNC Charlotte’s PlanCharlotte Blog:

The N.C. House in March passed a bill to do away with the use of protest petitions in rezonings statewide, and neighborhood groups in Charlotte and other fast-growing communities fear they will lose their voice in shaping development. They are mistaken. Continue reading

Senate Approves Legislation Restricting Local Residential Design Controls

By a vote of 43 – 7, the North Carolina Senate this week passed a bill that would restrict the ability of local governments to place costly architectural and aesthetic design requirements on residential construction.

All five Mecklenburg County senators, Joel Ford, Jeff Jackson, Bob Rucho, Jeff Tarte and Joyce Waddell, voted ‘YES’ on SB 25 ‘Zoning/Design & Aesthetic Controls’, when it was heard on Monday night. Tarte and Ford were sponsors of the legislation, as were Union County Senator Tommy Tucker and Iredell County Senator Andrew Brock were also sponsors.

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Charlotte REALTORS® Meet with Legislators in Raleigh

Charlotte-area Realtors® on the Senate Floor with Jeff Tarte on NCAR Legislative Day

Charlotte-area Realtors® on the Senate Floor with Jeff Tarte on NCAR Legislative Day

More than 50 Realtors® from Mecklenburg and Iredell County traveled to Raleigh last week to meet with House and Senate members at the North Carolina General Assembly about issues and legislation critical to the real estate industry.

Representative Rob Bryan talks with Realtors® visiting the General Assembly in Raleigh

Representative Rob Bryan talks with Realtors® visiting the General Assembly in Raleigh

Realtors met on the floor of the State Senate with Senator Jeff Tarte (R-Cornelius), then on the House floor with Rep. Charles Jeter (R-Huntersville).

Throughout the morning, we also met with Representatives Rodney Moore (D-Charlotte) and Rob Bryan (R-Charlotte), as well as with Senators Jeff Jackson (D-Charlotte) and Joel Ford (D-Charlotte). Before heading home, the group met with Representative John Bradford, a Realtor® from Cornelius, during a lunch briefing at the NC Museum of History.

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General Assembly Wraps a Busy Week as Crossover Approaches

In football terms, halftime is approaching at the General Assembly.

With the exception of budget and spending bills, any legislation that isn’t approved by one chamber by April 30th will effectively be dead for the session. So this week and next will produce an avalanche of activity as legislators try to move bills through committees and onto the House or Senate floor in record time.

Many of the bills chasing the crossover deadline will have a big impact on the real estate industry — here’s a look at a few of the many bills we’re keeping our eyes on:

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NC House Passes Building Permit Reform Legislation

Over objections raised by building inspectors and state fire officials, the North Carolina House yesterday passed by wide margins a bill to improve the permitting and inspection process for home builders, and improve consistency in how the building code is interpreted across the state.

HB 255, ‘Building Code Regulatory Reform’, was approved yesterday in a 105 – 5 vote, and now heads to the Senate.

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Charlotte Considering Development, Rezoning Fee Hikes to Help Bridge Budget Gap

At a budget work session this afternoon, Charlotte City Council reviewed a number of staff proposals to address a budget deficit for FY 2016 that has ballooned to $21.7 million due to an larger-than-expected $2 billion drop in property valuations and the loss of the Business Privilege License Fee, which the General Assembly eliminated last year.

While no fee increases were presented at today’s budget workshop, city staff told members of a Development Services Advisory Committee in a separate meeting that residential land development permit fees could increase by as much as 19 percent, commercial permitting fees by 24 percent, commercial plan review fees by 27 percent and rezoning petition fees by a whopping 300 percent. These fee hikes would help the city achieve 100% cost recovery for the provision of these services to developers.

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