November 4, 2010

Special assessments certified, ready for your payment

By Michael Johnson, Editor

City commissioners approved the latest special assessments for street, sewer and water improvements on Oct. 26 with a feeling that their hands were tied. This was the second meeting for the public to voice their protests towards the assessments and included street improvement 2009-01, water/sewer improvement 2009-01, street improvement 2009-02, street improvement 2009-04. There were six protests heard. City auditor Milissa Price read through the protests starting with Merle Torkelson. Torkelson submitted a letter of protest in regards to the street improvement 2009-1. The protest was in regards to how the cost of the improvement was divided amongst various properties unfairly. Torkelson did not, however, protest a specific property so commissioners approved no change. As city attorney Dave Lindell explained, the commissioners could not make changes to the formula that was used to make the assessments. At this point they could only change individual protests to individual properties. Commissioner Derek Laning made the comment that the formula that the special assessment committee used has been the same used in the past five years. It was a bulls-eye approach which did not spread the cost out equally to the entire city. While commissioners appreciated the opinion they could take no action.

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