Three street project assessment rolls adopted by City Council

Deb Moldaschel
The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch

Tuesday, Nov. 9, the Sleepy Eye City Council held the assessment hearings on three projects: 2020-2021 Street and Utility; 12th Avenue/St. Mary's St. Street and Utility; and CSAH 35/First Avenue Utility, prior to the regular council meeting. Nearly 400 affected property owners had received notice of the hearing. In a conversation Monday, City Manager Bob Elston told the Herald-Dispatch his office had already heard from 50-60 property owners and handled their questions. The hearing was attended by about 20 citizens. Elston and Bolton & Menk engineers Dave Palm and Matt Miller presented information on how the projects were assessed and answered questions.

Palm explained that only concrete, sewer services and alley improvements were assessable. On the 2021-2021 project, one property owner appealed his assessment as he put in a new driveway approach two years ago and it had been replaced in the project. He asked for a reduction in the assessment. Another asked to have concrete damage in his driveway looked at.

Remember when it started? First Avenue should be reopened in a couple weeks.

Palm said on the First Avenue project the county paid for concrete work so the only assessments were for sewer services. One property owner objected to the price and said she wasn't informed it was happening. Palm and Elston said letters were sent prior to a hearing held late last winter. The property owner said she didn't receive that letter.

Elston explained that after the assessment rolls are adopted, property owners will receive an invoice, which can be paid by Dec. 15, after which the amount will go on their property taxes, spread over a 10-year period with a 3% interest charge.

The hearing was closed and the Council approved resolutions to adopt the assessment rolls for each project (three resolutions).                          

The Council approved decertifying the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District created for the Meadowview apartments project in 1995, for a 25 year period now expiring. With decertification the taxing entities—County, City, and School District—will receive the tax dollars going forward.

The Council approved a 10 year lease agreement, at $1 per year, with Papa Tango Easter Shrimp for a parcel of land the City owns near the Del Monte ponds they recently purchased.

Police Chief Matt Andres told the council officer David Gordon left the department to accept another position and that the two officers, Taylor Bolinger and Issac Froehlich, recently hired at one-half position each had both accepted the offer to be full-time.