In the Dec. 31 Frederick News-Post editorial “Push developers for more school funding” about proposed new-home construction fees, Frederick County Councilman Steve McKay is quoted as saying the fees are for higher-end homes and he implies that the increase in fees will not affect the lower end of the market.

That is just not so. The effect of those fees will increase the prices of those homes and thus, increase demand for lower-priced homes, certainly driving up housing costs across the board, including rental rates. That’s Economics 101, plain and simple.

There is no denying the need for more money for school construction in a growing county, but our elected officials cannot ascribe to a false notion that increases in the costs of housing construction will not be passed on to buyers through increased prices.

The inexorable rise in home prices in Frederick County continues to make living here more expensive every year; raising these fees can only exacerbate that and hinder any strategy of moving the county closer to adding more, much-needed affordable housing.

(2) comments


Well, if you want to invoke economics 101, growth should pay for itself. After all, our politicians spout growth as a way to solve all our ills (although I'm still not sure how it solves pollution, climate change, congestion, quality of life issues). Those who are imposing the cost should shoulder most if not all of the additional burden they create.


The impact on lower-cost housing is not as much, however. It's like raising minimum wage; people think it raises costs evenly so that it's a wash, but of course it does not and it is not a wash. Affordable housing is important but there is no getting around the fact that housing costs in FredCo will continue to rise for the foreseeable future, no matter what we do.

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