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SENATE DOCKET, NO. 796        FILED ON: 1/2/2009

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 100



The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



Bruce E. Tarr


To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
              Court assembled:

              The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the passage of the accompanying bill:

An Act establishing a linkage exaction progra m in the city of Gloucester






Bruce E. Tarr

First Essex and Middlesex

Ann-Margaret Ferrante

5th Essex

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts


In the Year Two Thousand and Nine



An Act establishing a linkage exaction program in the city of Gloucester.


              Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

              SECTION 1. Purpose and Findings - Whereas, the City of Gloucester seeks to foster responsible development consistent with the needs of the community and in the context of sound planning and adequate and sustainable municipal infrastructure, therefore it is deemed ne cessary to develop and implement a program by which private projects are evaluated to determine their impacts on public infrastructure and required to address those impacts financially in addition to any and all other conditions upon which approval may be predicated.

              SECTION 2. Establishment of a Linkage Exaction Ordinance - (A) The city council of the city of Gloucester may, by ordinance, require the payment of a linkage exaction as a condition of approval of a development impact project plan, as defined by the ordinance, for any future development within the jurisdiction of this act. The linkage exaction shall only be imposed on the construction, enlarging, expansion, substantial rehabilitation, or change of use of non-residential and residential projects that require some form of zoning relief or exceed a threshold which shall be established by the city council. The linkage ordinance shall be used solely for the purposes of defraying the costs of capital improvements provided by the city caused by and nec essary to support future development such as, but not limited to the following: capital improvements to school facilities, public facilities, roads, sewers, water supply lines, affordable housing, child care facilities, job training facilities, public safe ty service and facilities, and parks, playgrounds and other recreational facilities. (B) The linkage exaction ordinance may be enacted if the following criteria are met: (1) A rational nexus shall be established that shows the relationship between the creation of new residential dwelling units, and office, commercial and industrial structures and their impact on the following services including, but not limited to, school facilities, public facilities, roads, sewers, water supply lines, affordable housi ng, child care facilities, job training facilities, public safety facilities, and parks, playgrounds and other recreational facilities. (2) The city shall develop and prepare a study for any project for which a linkage exaction fee is levied that examines the proposed project and projects the cost of capital improvements necessary to accommodate said project. Any exaction which may be established pursuant with this act shall be set in accordance with the methodology set forth in the study.

(3) The exactio n shall be established on the basis of the cost projections in the capital improvement plans and study as described in clause (2) of subsection B of section two and the expected level of allowed development pursuant to the city's zoning ordinance, as it ma y be amended. (4) The city shall have the authority to create distinct and separate revolving trust accounts for each linkage ordinance enacted by the city for the services delineated in clause (1) of subsection B of section two for necessary improvements resulting from future development. No exaction shall be paid to the city's general treasury or used as general revenues subject to the provisions of section fifty-three of chapter forty-four of the General Laws. (5) The level of any exaction shall be rev iewed at least every three years and reset as required based upon the recommendation of the office of community development and the mayor of said city. (6) Any funds not expended or encumbered by the end of the calendar quarter immediately following six y ears from the date the linkage fee was paid shall, upon application of the applicant or his assigns, be returned to such landowner with interest from the fee's deposit in an interest bearing account, provided that the applicant or his assigns submits an ap plication for a refund to the office of community development within one hundred and eighty days of the expiration of the six year period.

SECTION 3. This act shall take effect upon its passage.

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