Montgomery Council Approves Growth and Infrastructure Policy, Ends Building Moratorium

Yesterday, the Montgomery County Council approved the 2020-2024 Growth and Infrastructure Policy, formerly known as the Subdivision Staging Policy to support necessary infrastructure and new development. The policy ends the County’s residential building moratorium at the end of this year, and incorporates several smart growth actions.

Included in the policy are changes related to schools, transportation and taxes. The Council voted to eliminate the countywide development moratorium and replace it with a three-tiered Utilization Premium Payment that increases the required amount to coincide with higher levels of overutilization. This change will help the County advance its housing goals while still addressing the financial needs of school facilities.

The County will classify School impact Areas and term them “Infill” or “Turnover’ Areas based on growth patterns, which will provide a better measure for calculating school impact taxes. Turnover in school areas describes when homes without children are sold to young families, often adding new students to local schools. This has led to much of the growth that initiated the moratorium last year for areas where schools had enrollments exceeding 120 percent of their capacity.

From the press release:

“After many committee and Council meetings, I am so very pleased with the work product that we have agreed upon today,” said Council President Sidney Katz. “This Council left no stone unturned in its search for the best path forward for the future of our County. The Growth and Infrastructure Policy is the culmination of a vast amount of work by the Council, the Montgomery County Planning Board, many other agencies and interested groups. It presents a framework that will guide us forward and allow growth in our County to proceed within the proper parameters.”

For more information on all the changes approved by the Council and a wealth of reactions from Councilmembers, view the full press release.

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