Minnesota, Pennsylvania Advance Laws to Rein in Municipal Professional Fees
Home builders associations in two states — Minnesota and Pennsylvania — have worked on behalf of legislation to regulate the frequently excessive professional fees that municipalities are charging developers during the permitting process.
The Minnesota law, which took effect on Aug. 1, amends the state’s planning statute and clarifies and defines regulatory fees that can be imposed by municipalities.
The Pennsylvania legislation (SB 892) defines and clarifies regulations and actions relating to professional consultants. The bill has been passed by both houses and is currently in the Senate's Rules and Executive Nominations Committee.
Professionals consulted during the permitting process — such as civil engineers, attorneys, land planners and architects — often demand higher salaries than other municipal workers or charge high hourly consulting fees, both of which can contribute to local budgetary problems.