E-470 Board Votes to Eliminate Highway Expansion Fee

Fee viewed as an impediment to new construction and economic growth

July 27, 2017 — The E-470 Public Highway Authority’s board of directors voted during its meeting Thursday (July 27) to terminate a fee imposed on new-construction building permits issued along the E-470 corridor. The measure becomes effective immediately.

E-470’s Highway Expansion Fee (HEF), which was first imposed in 1989, is a one-time fee paid when a building permit is issued for new construction within the E-470 HEF corridor (1.5 miles on either side of the E-470 centerline). The ability for a public highway authority to impose a HEF is a provision of the 1987 Public Highway Authority Act.

According to E-470 Board Chair Josh Martin, the board, composed of elected officials from each of the authority’s eight member governments, took an active role in initiating and finalizing the adoption of the measure to eliminate the fee. A draft of the resolution was presented to the board at its June 8 meeting.

Martin said, “This will remove an impediment to new construction, and foster economic growth and vitality along the corridor.” He said terminating the fee will also eliminate the administrative burden on E-470’s member governments that results from the collection and processing of the fees.

Board member Roger Partridge, a Douglas County commissioner, said, “E-470 and the governmental units support a cost-effective toll road and believe elimination of the HEF aids in achieving that.”

The fee level for HEFs vary; they are based on a complex formula incorporating multiple land use categories and the amount of traffic a new development is expected to place on E-470. The resolution passed by the board said the collection and remittance of the HEFs “…places a significant administrative burden on the Governmental Units and their staffing resources, as well as burdening the Authority staff.” The resolution also stated “…HEFs generate only very modest revenues, the value of which is outweighed by the administrative burden they create.”

The E-470 Board consists of eight voting members. The voting members that worked diligently to move this initiative forward include the Board Chair, Josh Martin (Town of Parker Council Member), the Vice Chair, Heidi Williams (Thornton Mayor), the Secretary/Treasurer, Chaz Tedesco (Adams County Commissioner), Bill Holen (Arapahoe County Commissioner), Steve Hogan (Aurora Mayor), Steve Douglas (Commerce City Council Member), Roger Partridge (Douglas County Commissioner) and Dick McLean (Brighton Mayor).

ABOUT E-470: E-470 is the 75-mph toll road that runs along the eastern perimeter of the Denver metropolitan area. The road is not taxpayer-funded and is financed, constructed, operated and governed by the E-470 Public Highway Authority. E-470 is composed of eight local governments: Adams, Arapahoe and Douglas counties, and the municipalities of Aurora, Brighton, Commerce City, Parker and Thornton.

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Alexa Pecorella, E-470 Marketing and Public Relations Supervisor

Dan Christopherson, Christopherson & Co. Public Relations