Ordinance No. 2003.04 SPECIAL ASSESSMENT PROCEDURE

Bear Lake Village Ordinance No. 2003.04
SPECIAL ASSESSMENT PROCEDURE
An ordinance establishing the special assessment procedure for the Village of Bear Lake.

THE Village of Bear Lake ORDAINS:

Sec. 1.Public improvements; special assessments.
The Council of the Village by adopting a resolution may determine the whole or a part of the expense of a local public improvement or repair shall be defrayed by special assessments upon the property special benefitted.

Sec. 2. Definitions.
(1) The term “cost” as used in this Ordinance, when referring to the cost of any local public improvement, shall mean the same as “expense” and shall include the cost of services, plans, condemnation, spreading of rolls, notices, advertising, financing, construction and legal fees and all other public costs incidental to the making of such improvements, the special assessments therefor and the financing thereof.
(2) The term “local public improvement”as used in this Ordinance, shall mean any public improvement which is of such a nature as to benefit especially any real property or properties within a district in the vicinity of such improvement. It shall include, but not be limited to the following improvements, including the land therefor: public buildings and offices, garbage collection, firehouses, destroying weeds, tree trimming, erosion control by breakwaters or seawalls, street lighting, public docks, streets, alleys, lanes, bridges, sewers, drains, water courses, water systems, or any other local public improvement or repair.

Sec. 3.To initiate special assessment projects.
Proceedings for the making of local public improvements within the Village, and the determination that the whole or any part of the expense thereof shall be defrayed by special assessment upon the property especially benefitted, provided that all special assessments levied shall be in proportion to the benefits derived from the improvements, may be commenced by resolution of the Council, with or without a petition.

Sec. 4. Initiation by petition.
Local public improvements may be initiated by petition signed by property owners owning fifty-one (51) percent or more of the total property in the proposed special assessment district. Such petition shall contain a brief description of the property owned by the respective signers thereof and if it shall appear that the petition is signed by at least fifty-one (51) percent of said owners, the Clerk shall certify the same to the Council. The petition shall be addressed to the Council but Council shall not be obligated to make the improvement.

Sec. 5.Survey and report.
Before the Council shall consider the making of any local public improvement by the use of a Special Assessment, the same shall be referred by resolution to the Village President directing him to cause to be prepared a report which shall include necessary plans, profiles, specifications and detailed estimates of costs, and estimate of the life of the improvement, a description of the assessment district or districts, and such other pertinent information as will permit the Council to decide the cost, extent and desirability of the improvement proposed and what part or proportion thereof should be paid by special assessments upon the property especially benefitted and what part, if any, should be paid by the Village at large. The Council shall not finally determine to proceed with the making of any local public improvement until such report of the Village President has been filed, nor until after a public hearing has been held by the Council for the purpose of hearing objections to the making of such improvement.

Sec. 6. Determination on the project, notice.
After the Village President has presented the report required in Section 5 for making any local public improvement as requested in the resolution of the Council, and the Council has reviewed said report, a resolution may be passed approving the local public improvement, setting forth the nature thereof, prescribing what part or proportion of the cost of such improvement shall be paid by special assessment upon the property especially benefitted, determination of benefits received by affected properties, and what part, if any, shall be paid by the Village at large; designating the limits of the special assessment district to be affected, designating whether to be assessed according to frontage or other benefits, placing the complete information on file in the office of the Village Clerk, where the same may be found for examination, and directing the Village Clerk to give notice of public hearing on the proposed improvement, at which time and place opportunity will be given interested persons to be heard. Such notice shall be given by one publication in a newspaper published or circulated within the Village and by first class mail addressed to each owner of or person in interest in property to be assessed as shown by the last general tax assessment roll of the Village, said publication and mailing to be made at least ten (10) full days prior to the date of said hearing. The hearing required by this Section may be held at any regular, adjourned, or special meeting of the Council. Said Notice shall comply with the Special Assessment Hearing Statue MCL 211.731 or MCL 67.26 for sewers and drains.

Sec. 7. Hearing.
At the public hearing on the proposed improvement, all persons interested shall be given an opportunity to be heard, after which the Council may modify the scope of the local public improvement in such a manner as they shall deem to be in the best interest of the Village as a whole; provided that if the amount of work is increased or additions are made to the district, then another hearing shall be held pursuant to notice prescribed in Section 6. If the determination of the Council shall be to proceed with the improvement, a resolution shall be passed approving the necessary profiles, plans, specifications, assessment district and detailed estimates of cost, and directing the Assessor to prepare a special assessment roll in accordance with the Council’s determination and report the same to the Council for confirmation.
 Notwithstanding any provision of this Section, the Council may in its discretion, delay the preparation of the special assessment roll until after the completion of the improvement, in which case the actual cost thereof shall be reported to the Council, and the special assessment roll shall be then made for such actual cost rather than for the estimated cost as in other cases.

Sec. 8.Special assessment roll.
(1) The appointed ‘Assessor’ shall thereupon prepare a special assessment roll including all lots and parcels of land within the special assessment district designated by Council, and shall assess to each such lot or parcel of land such relative portion of the whole sum to be levied against all the lands in the special assessment district as the benefit to such lot or parcel of land bears to the total benefits to all lands in such district. There shall also be entered upon such roll the amount which has been assessed to the Village at large.
(2) When the appointed Assessor shall have completed such assessment roll, he, or she, shall attach thereto, or endorse thereon, his certificate to the effect that said roll has been made by him pursuant to a resolution of the Council (giving date of adoption of same) and that in making the assessments therein he has, as near as may be according to his best judgment, conformed in all respects to the directions contained in such resolution and to this Ordinance, and to the State law and to the provisions of this Section. Thereupon he, or she, shall file said special assessment roll with the Village Clerk who shall present the same to the Council.

Sec. 9.Meeting to review special assessment roll; objections in writing.
Upon receipt of such special assessment roll, the Council, by resolution, shall accept such assessment roll and order it to be filed in the office of the Village Clerk for public examination, shall fix the time and place the Council will meet to review such special assessment roll and direct the Village Clerk to give notice of a public hearing for the purpose of affording an opportunity for interested persons to be heard. Such notice shall be given by one publication in a newspaper published or circulated within the Village and by first class mail addressed to each owner of or person in interest in property to be assessed as shown by the last general tax assessment roll of the Village, said publication and mailing to be made at least ten (10) days prior to the date of said hearing. The hearing required by this Section may be held at any regular, adjourned or special meeting of the Council. At this meeting, all interested persons or parties shall present in writing or orally their objections, if any, to the assessments against them. The appointed Assessor shall be present at every meeting of the Council at which a special assessment is to be reviewed.

Sec. 10. Changes and corrections in assessment roll.
The Council shall meet at the time and place designated for the review of such special assessment roll, and at such meeting, or a proper adjournment thereof, shall consider all objections orally or in writing. The Council may correct said roll as to any special assessment or description of any lot or parcel of land or other errors appearing therein; or it may, by resolution, annul such assessment roll and direct that new proceedings be instituted. The same proceedings shall be followed in making a new roll as in the making of the original roll. If, after hearing all objections and making a record of such changes as the Council deems justified, the Council determines that it is satisfied with said special assessment roll and that assessments are in proportion to benefits received, it shall thereupon pass a resolution reciting such determinations, conforming such roll, placing it on file in the office of the Village Clerk and directing the Village Clerk to attach his warrant to a certified copy thereof within ten (10) days, therein commanding the Assessor to spread and the Treasurer to collect the various sums and amounts appearing thereon as directed by the Council. Such roll shall have the date of confirmation endorsed thereon and shall from that date be final and conclusive for the purpose of the improvement to which it applies, subject only to adjustment to conform to the actual cost of the improvement, as provided in Section 16.

Sec. 11.Limitations of actions.
(1) An action may not be instituted for the purpose of contesting or enjoining the collection of a special assessment unless:
(a) within 45 days after the confirmation of the special assessment roll, written notice is given to the Council indicating an intention to file such an action and stating grounds on which it is claimed that the assessment is illegal; and
(b) the action is commenced within 90 days after the confirmation of the roll.
(2) Illegal assessment; revocation, correction, reconfirmation; assessment of property not involved. If a portion of an assessment roll is determined to be illegal in whole or in part, the Council may revoke its confirmation, correct the illegality, if possible, or reconfirm it. Property which is not involved in the illegality may not be assessed more than was imposed upon the original confirmation without further notice and hearing thereon.

Sec. 12.Special assessment, when due.
All special assessments, except such installments thereof as the Council shall make payable at a future time as provided in this Ordinance, shall be due and payable upon confirmation of the special assessment roll.

Sec. 13. Partial payments, when due.
The Council may provide for the payment of special assessments in annual installments. Such annual installments shall not exceed twenty (20) in number, the first installment being due upon confirmation of the roll or on such date as the Council may determine and deferred installments being due annually thereafter, or in the discretion of the Council, may be spread upon and made a part of each annual Village tax roll thereafter until all are paid. Interest shall be charged on all deferred installments at a rate of seven (7%) percent or the highest amount permitted by State law for such assessments, whichever is greater, commencing on the due date of the first installment and payable on the due date of such subsequent installment; the full amount of all or any deferred installments, with interest accrued thereon to the date of payment, may be paid in advance of the due dates thereof. If the full assessment or the first installment thereof shall be due upon confirmation, each property owner shall have sixty (60) days from the date of confirmation to pay the full amount of said assessment, or the full amount of any installments thereof, without interest or penalty. Following said sixty (60) day period, the assessment or first installment thereof shall, if unpaid, be considered as delinquent and the same penalties shall be collected on such unpaid assessments or first installments thereof as are provided in this Ordinance and State law to be collected on delinquent general Village taxes. Deferred installments shall be collected without penalty until sixty (60) days after the due date thereof, after which time such installments shall be considered as delinquent and such penalties on said installments shall be collected as are provided in the Village Ordinance to be collected on delinquent general Village taxes. After the Council has confirmed the roll, the Village Treasurer shall notify by mail each property owner on said roll that said roll has been filed, stating the amount assessed and the terms of payment. Failure on the part of the Village Treasurer to give said notice or of such owner to receive said notice shall not invalidate any special assessment roll of the Village or any assessment thereon, nor excuse the payment of interest or penalties. At the option of the Village, the notice or bill for the amount owing may be sent out after the project has been completed. In such event no interest shall be owing nor shall the sixty (60) day period begin to run until after the notice has been mailed by the Village Treasurer.

Sec. 14. Delinquent special assessments.
Any assessment, or part thereof, remaining unpaid on the first Monday of March following the date when the same became delinquent shall be reported as unpaid by the Treasurer to the Council. Any such delinquent assessment, together with all accrued interest shall be transferred and reassessed on the next annual City tax roll in a column headed “Special Assessments” with a penalty of four (4%) percent upon such total amount added thereto, and when so transferred and reassessed upon said tax roll shall be collected in all respects as provided for the collection of Village taxes.

Sec. 15. Creation of lien.
Special assessments and all interest, penalties and charges thereon from the date of confirmation of the roll shall become a debt to the Village from the persons to whom they are assessed, and, until paid, shall be and remain a lien upon the property assessed, of the same character and effect as the lien created by general laws for State, County and Village taxes, and the lands upon which the same are a lien shall be subject to sale therefor the same as are lands upon which delinquent Village taxes constitute a lien.

Sec. 16. Additional assessments, refunds.
The Village Clerk shall, within sixty (60) days after the completion of each local or special public improvement; compile the actual cost thereof and certify the same to the Assessor who shall adjust the special assessment roll to correspond therewith. Should the assessment prove larger than necessary by five (5%) percent or less, the same shall be reported to the Council which may place the excess in the Village treasury or make a refund thereof prorated according to the assessment. If the assessment exceeds the amount necessary by more than five (5%) percent, the entire excess shall be credited to owners of property as shown by the Village assessment roll upon which such assessment has been levied, prorata according to the assessment; provided, however, that no refunds of special assessments may be made which impair, or contravene the provision of any outstanding obligation or bond secured in whole or part by such special assessments. When any special assessment roll shall prove insufficient to meet the cost of the improvement for which it was made, the Council may make an additional prorata assessment, but the total amount assessed against any one parcel of land shall not exceed the benefits received by said lot or parcel of land.

Sec. 17. Additional procedures.
In any case where the provisions of this Ordinance may prove to be insufficient to carry out fully the making of any special assessment, the Council shall provide by ordinance any additional steps or procedures required.

Sec. 18. Collection of special assessments.
In the event bonds are issued in anticipation of the collection of special assessments as hereinbefore provided, all collections on each special assessment roll or combination of rolls shall be set in a separate fund for the payment of the principal and interest on the bonds so issued in anticipation of the payment of such special assessments, and shall be used for no other purpose.

Sec. 19. Special assessment accounts.
Moneys raised by special assessment to pay the cost of any local improvements shall be held in a special fund to pay such cost or to repay any money borrowed therefor. Each special assessment account must be used only for the improvement project for which the assessment was levied, expenses incidental thereto, including the repayment of the principal and interest on money borrowed therefor, and to refund excessive assessments, if refunds be authorized.

Sec. 20. Reassessment for benefits.
Whenever the Council shall deem any special assessment invalid, deficient or defective for any reason whatever, or if any court of competent jurisdiction shall have adjudged such assessment to be illegal for any reason whatever, in whole or in part, the Council shall have power to cause a new assessment to be made for the same purpose for which the former assessment was made, whether the improvement or any part thereof has been completed and whether any part of the assessment has been collected or not. All proceedings on such reassessment and for the collection thereof shall be made in the manner as provided for the original assessment. If any portion of the original assessment shall have been collected and not refunded, it shall be applied upon the reassessment and the reassessment shall to that extent be deemed satisfied. If more than the amount reassessed shall have been collected, the balance shall be refunded to the person making such payment.

Sec. 21. Assessing single lots.
When any expense shall have been incurred by the Village upon or in respect to any single premises, which expense is chargeable against such premises and the owner thereof under the provisions of the Ordinance, or any ordinance of the Village, or law of the State of Michigan, and is not of that class required to be prorated among several lots and parcels of land in a special assessment district, an account of the labor, material or service for which such expense was incurred, with a description of the premises upon or in respect to which the expense was incurred, and the name of the owner, if known, shall be reported to the Village Clerk who shall immediately charge and bill the owner, if known. The Village President shall annually on or before January 15, or at such other times as he may deem advisable, direct the appointed Assessor to prepare a special assessment roll covering all such charges which shall not have been paid. Said roll shall be filed with the Village Clerk who shall present the same to the Council. However Council may follow the entire procedure used for other special assessments. Upon confirmation of any special assessment roll authorized by this Section, the Council shall determine the number of installments in which assessments may be paid, not to exceed twenty (20) and the rate of interest to be charged on installments, but not to exceed the highest legally permitted amount or seven (7%) percent, whichever is greater.

Sec. 22. Special assessments; notice of hearing, service; local tax assessment records.
In all cases where special assessments are made against property, notice of all hearings in the special assessment proceedings shall be given as provided in this Ordinance, in addition to any notice of such hearings to be given by publication or posting as required by statute, charter or ordinance. The “last general tax assessment roll of the Village” means the last assessment roll for ad valorem tax purposes which has been reviewed by the local board of review, as supplemented by any subsequent changes in the names or the addresses of such owners or parties listed thereon.

Sec. 23. Anticipatory borrowing and bond issues; general obligation bonds.
The Village Council may borrow money and issue bonds of the Village therefor in anticipation of the payment of special assessments in one (1) or more special assessment districts, which bonds may be an obligation of the special assessment districts or may be both an obligation of the special assessments district and a general obligation of the Village. The Village Council may issue general obligation bonds to defray that portion of the cost and expense of a local public improvement chargeable to the Village at large.

Sec. 24: Severability
This ordinance, and the various parts, sections, and clauses thereof, are hereby declared to be severable. If any part, section, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase, or work is judged unconstitutional or invalid by a Court of competent jurisdiction, it is hereby provided that such adjudication shall not affect, impair, or invalidate the remainder of this ordinance.

Sec. 25: Publication
This ordinance shall be published within fifteen (15) days after its passage and shall become effective thirty (30) days from the date of its passage.

Adopted this 11th day of November, 2003.
This ordinance was duly adopted on11th day of November, 2003, at a regular meeting of the Village Council and will become effective 
11th day of December, 2003

Date: 11th day of November, 2003
Signed: Glen Moore, Village President
Signed: Pam Wade, Village Clerk

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