Council approves project assessments

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 11/15/00.

All the assessments for the city street projects this summer were approved by the Paynesville City Council at their Wednesday night meeting, except one.

Assessment hearings were held following the council meeting Wednesday evening to review improve-ments and receive input from residents affected by the various projects. Four property owners affected by the assessments attended the meeting.

The council approved the assessments as presented with the exception of the assessment to Wimmer Landscaping, which totals $14,917.

Wimmer will not be charged an assessment; however, there will be a connection fee charged if and when this property is hooked up to the water and sewer service or if a driveway is constructed to provide an exit to the new section of Spruce Street.

Assessments ranged from $2,250 to $8,000 for residential homes. The school district and AMPI had the largest assessments, up to $27,000.

The main project cost $1,033,357, about $176,000 less than what was estimated. The property owners were assessed $37.61 per foot for street assessment, $750 per sewer hookup, and $850 per water main hookup.

Homeowners are billed for 100 percent of the footage on the short side of their lot and 50 percent for the long side. Pete Carlson, city engineer, explained the measurements are taken from the property description on the tax roll.

Property owners affected by the projects will be assessed over a 10-year period at seven percent interest. They have the option of paying the entire amount, interest free, until Thursday, Dec. 8.

Total cost of the Spruce Street extension was $362,509, about $66,000 less than what was estimated. Each single family lot is being assessed $11,300. Commercial property owners are being assessed $48.89 per foot for the street and $35.07 per foot for utility work.

The assessments on the new commercial lots will be deferred until the properties are developed.

Two existing commercial properties were affected by the project. One will be using the city service, but the other plans not to.

John Wimmer, owner of Wimmer Landscaping, reminded the council he should not pay for the street or utilities as the new street is located behind his business. Wimmer also has his own well and septic system and does not need the city's services.

"I don't feel I should pay for a street that I won't use," Wimmer told the council. "The project put us through a lot of extra work."

The council decided to delay assessments on his property until any new city services are utilized.

Wimmer complained about the lack of communications between him and the city. Carlson admitted communications on his part were terrible.

Ron Mergen, public works director, informed the council that the landscaping along the Spruce Street extension has not been completed and is part of the list of items still needing to be finished by the contractor.

Mergen thanked the residents for their cooperation and patience during the project.

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