WASHOUGAL, WA-The city government here plans to charge a construction-impact fee that would be used to bolster its fire department.

The fee would tax new commercial developments, including apartment buildings, to the tune of 11 cents per sf, or $5,500 for a 50,000-sf project. Single family residential developers would be charged a flat fee of $172.90 per home.

The city estimates the fee will raise approximately $100,000 over the next six years, which city officials say will cover about 5% of the cost of adding two new stations to the fire department over the next 20 years and outfitting them with the necessary fire fighting equipment.

The City Council agreed this week to vote on the proposal July 15. Washougal voters last year twice rejected bond issues that would have covered most of the new additions.

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