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(a) Authorization of Fees. The Planning Department shall charge fees to compensate the Department for the cost of processing applications, developing and revising land use controls, and performing or providing other activities and services. Notwithstanding the procedures set forth in this Section 350, the Board of Supervisors may modify the fees by ordinance at any time.
(b) Base Fees. The base fee to be charged and collected by the Department for each class of application, permit, filing request, activity, or service processed or performed by the Department are stated in Section 4 of Ordinance No. 149-16 , available in Board of Supervisors File No. 160632 and on the website of the Board of Supervisors. The base fees stated in Section 4 of that ordinance are the fees in effect as of the date of introduction of the ordinance. If the Board of Supervisors adopts a new base fee, or modifies or deletes an existing base fee, the new or modified fee shall be included on the Planning Department Fee Schedule together with the applicable ordinance number.
(c) Annual Adjustment of Base Fees. Consistent with preexisting law, beginning with the setting of fees for fiscal year 2016-2017, the Controller will annually adjust the base fee amounts referenced in subsection (b) and stated in Section 4 of Ordinance No. 149-16 in Board of Supervisors File No. 160632, without further action by the Board of Supervisors, to reflect changes in the two-year average Consumer Price Index (CPI) change for the San Francisco/San Jose Primary Metropolitan Area (PMSA). This process will occur as follows.
No later than April 15 of each year, the Director shall submit the Department's current Fee Schedule to the Controller, who shall apply the CPI adjustment to produce a new Fee Schedule for the fiscal year beginning July 1. No later than May 15 of each year, the Controller shall file a report with the Board of Supervisors reporting the new Fee Schedule and certifying that: (1) the fees produce sufficient revenue to support the costs of providing the services for which the fee is charged and (2) the fees do not produce revenue that exceeds the costs of providing the services for which each permit fee is charged.
No later than September of each year, the Department's Fee Schedule showing the current fee amounts inclusive of annual adjustments shall be published in an Appendix to the Planning Code, posted on the Department's website, and made available upon request at the main office of the Department.
(d) Surcharges. In addition to fees, a surcharge shall be assessed on some fees to compensate the Department for the cost of appeals to the Board of Supervisors or the Board of Appeals. These surcharges are stated in Section 4 of Ordinance No. 149-16 in Board of Supervisors File No. 160632. These surcharges are not part of base fees as described in subsection (b) and are not subject to the annual adjustment process described in subsection (c). However, to fully inform the public, such surcharges shall be included in the Planning Department Fee Schedule referenced in subsection (c).
In addition, there shall be a surcharge assessed on certain permit fees to fully compensate the Department for the costs of discretionary review, as detailed in Section 4 of the aforementioned ordinance. That surcharge will be treated as if it were a base fee, and will be subject to the annual adjustment process described in subsection (c) and included in the Planning Department Fee Schedule referenced in subsection (c).
(e) Estimated Construction Costs. Estimated construction costs are as defined by the San Francisco Building Code. Certain of the fees specified in Section 4 of Ordinance No. 149-16 in Board of Supervisors File No. 160632 place a limit on the fee based on its not exceeding a specified percentage of construction cost. This limit shall apply to certain fees, as set forth in Ordinance No. 149-16 and Ordinance No. 221-18, amending Ordinance No. 149-16, in Board of Supervisors File No. 180584.
(f) Time for Payment. All fees are payable at time of filing application or request, except where noted otherwise. However, the Director of Planning or his/her designee may authorize phased collection of the fee for a project whose work is projected to span more than one fiscal year. The balance of phased payments must be paid in full one week in advance of the first scheduled public hearing before the Planning Commission to consider the project or before issuance of the first site permit if no hearing is required.
(g) Time and Materials. The Planning Department shall charge the applicant for any time and materials cost incurred in excess of the initial fee charged if required to recover the Department's costs for providing services.
(1) The Department shall charge time and materials to recover the cost of correcting code violations and violations of Planning Commission and Department conditions of approval of use if such costs are not covered by the monitoring fee for conditions of approval specified in the Planning Department Fee Schedule.
(2) Where a different limitation on time and material charges is set forth elsewhere in this Article 3.5, that limitation shall prevail.
(3) The Planning Department may also charge for any time and material costs incurred by other departments or agencies of the City and County of San Francisco.
(4) Any balance of time and materials costs for active and open projects must be paid in full one week in advance of a scheduled public hearing before the Planning Commission to consider the project or before issuance of the first site permit if no hearing is required.
(h) Document Retrieval. The fee for files stored on-site shall be the actal1 costs for printing the file(s). The fee for files stored of-site shall be the actual costs for retrieval, printing, and return of files, as specified in a retrieval schedule prepared by the Director of Planning, or the Director's designee.
(i) Refunds. When an application is withdrawn by the applicant prior to a public hearing, or deemed canceled by the Planning Department due to inactivity on the part of the applicant, then the applicant shall be entitled to a refund of the fee paid to the Department less the time and materials expended. Refund requests must be submitted within six months of the project closure date.
(j) Deferred or Reduced Fee; Fee Waivers.
(1) Any fraternal, charitable, benevolent or any other nonprofit organization, that is exempt from taxation under the Internal Revenue laws of the United States and the Revenue and Taxation Code of the State of California as a bona fide fraternal, charitable, benevolent, or other nonprofit organization, or public entity that submits an application for the development of residential units all of which are affordable to low and moderate income households, as defined by the United States Housing and Urban Development Department, for a time period that is consistent with the policy of the Mayor's Office of Housing and Community Development and the Successor to the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency, may defer payment of the fees except those for discretionary review and appeals to the Board of Supervisors until (A) before final Planning Department approval of the building permit, preparatory to issuance of the building permit, before the building permit is released to the applicant, or (B) within one year of the date of action on the application, whichever comes first. This exemption shall apply notwithstanding the inclusion in the development of other nonprofit ancillary or accessory uses. Should the project be withdrawn prior to final Planning approval, the applicant shall pay time and material costs pursuant to Section 350(g).
(2) An exemption from paying the full fees specified for discretionary review or appeals to the Board of Supervisors may be granted when the requestor's income is not enough to pay for the fee without affecting his or her abilities to pay for the necessities of life, provided that the person seeking the exemption demonstrates to the Planning Director or his/her designee that he or she would be substantially affected by the proposed project.
(3) Certain of the fees charged in accordance with subsections (b) and (c) are subject in some circumstances to waiver, as stated in Section 4 of Ordinance No. 149-16 in Board of Supervisors File No. 160632.
(k) Late Payment; Charges and Collection of Overdue Accounts. The Director or his/her designee shall call upon the Bureau of Delinquent Revenues or duly licensed collection agencies for assistance in collecting delinquent accounts more than 60 days in arrears, in which case any additional costs of collection may be added to the fee amount outstanding. If the Department seeks the assistance of a duly licensed collection agency, the approval procedures of Administrative Code Chapter 10, Article V, Section 10.39-1et seq. will be applicable.
(Added by Ord. 153-93, App. 5/25/93; amended by Ord. 212-94, App. 6/2/94; Ord. 180-95, App. 6/2/95; Ord. 358-95, App. 11/15/95; Ord. 308-96, App. 7/25/96; Ord. 168-98, App. 5/21/98; Ord. 201-06, File No. 060699, App. 7/21/2006; Ord. 231-06, File No. 060991, App. 9/14/2006; Ord. 156-08, File No. 080737, App. 7/30/2008; Ord. 186-09, File No. 090698, App. 8/6/2009; Ord. 212-10, File No. 100703, App. 8/4/2010; Ord. 156-11, File No. 110707, App. 8/1/2011, Eff. 8/31/2011; Ord. 56-13 , File No. 130062, App. 3/28/2013, Eff. 4/27/2013; Ord. 165-14 , File No. 140593, App. 7/31/2014, Eff. 8/30/2014; Ord. 235-14 , File No. 140844, App. 11/26/2014, Eff. 12/26/2014; Ord. 149-16 , File No. 160632, App. 8/1/2016, Eff. 8/31/2016; Ord. 221-18, File No. 180584, App. 9/28/2018, Eff. 10/29/2018; Ord. 15-19, File No. 181046, App. 2/8/2019, Eff. 3/11/2019)
[Former] divisions (b) and (d) amended; Ord. 156-11, Eff. 8/31/2011. [Former] division (g)(1) amended; Ord. 56-13 , Eff. 4/27/2013. [Former] divisions (b) and (d) amended; Ord. 165-14 , Eff. 8/30/2014. [Former] undesignated introductory paragraph and [former] division (g)(1) amended; Ord. 235-14 , Eff. 12/26/2014. Former undesignated introductory paragraph designated as division (a) and amended; new divisions (b), (c), and (d) added; former divisions (a)-(c) redesignated as (e)-(g) and amended; new division (h) added; former division (d) redesignated as (i); former divisions (e) and (f) redesignated as (j) and (k) and amended; former division (g) deleted; Ord. 149-16 , Eff. 8/31/2016. Division (e) amended; Ord. 221-18, Eff. 10/29/2018. Division (b) amended; Ord. 15-19, Eff. 3/11/2019.
Ordinance 92-20, File No. 200113, approved 6/26/2020, effective 7/27/2020, and retroactive to 1/1/2020, provides, in part:
“Notwithstanding any provision of the Planning Code, including the fee schedule associated with Section 350, the permit fee related to reviewing permit applications seeking to legalize existing dwelling units that were constructed without the required permits is hereby waived for any permit issued for such activities between January 1, 2020 and December 31, 2024, inclusive.”
See Section 2(a) of the ordinance.