[HISTORY: Adopted by the Village Board of the Village of Belgium as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Finance and taxation — See Ch. 35.
Article I Special Assessments
[Adopted 11-21-1991 by Ord. No. 16-91 as Title 3, Ch. 2, of the 1991 Code]
The Village by resolution of its Village Board may levy and collect special assessments upon property in a limited and determinable area for special benefits conferred upon such property by any municipal work or improvement and may provide for the payment of all or any part of the cost of the work or improvement out of the proceeds of the special assessments.
[Amended 1-12-2004 by Ord. No. 3-04]
The amount assessed against any property for any work or improvement which does not represent an exercise of the police power shall not exceed the value of the benefits accruing to the property therefrom, and for those representing an exercise of the police power the assessment shall be upon a reasonable basis as determined by the Village Board.
Prior to making any such special assessments, the Village Board shall declare by preliminary resolution its intention to exercise such powers for a stated municipal purpose. Such resolution shall describe generally the contemplated purpose, the limits of the proposed assessment district, the number of installments in which the special assessments may be paid or that the number of installments will be determined at the hearing required under § 9-5 of this article and direct the proper municipal officer or employee to make a report thereon. Such resolution may limit the proportion of the cost to be assessed.
The report required by Subsection A shall consist of:
Preliminary or final plans and specifications.
An estimate of the entire cost of the proposed work or improvement.
A copy of the report when completed shall be filed with the Village Clerk for public inspection.
[Amended 3-8-2010 by Ord. No. 2-10]
When the Village Board determines by resolution that the hearing on the assessments be held subsequent to the completion of the work or improvement or the rending of the service, the report required by § 66.0703(5), Wis. Stats., and Subsection A and B above shall contain a statement of the final cost of the work, service or improvement in lieu of an estimate of the cost.
The cost of any work or improvement to be paid in whole or in part by special assessment on property may include the direct and indirect cost thereof, the damages occasioned thereby, the interest on bonds or notes issued in anticipation of the collection of the assessments, a reasonable charge for the services of the administrative staff of the Village and the cost of any architectural, engineering and legal services, and any other item of direct or indirect cost which may reasonably be attributed to the proposed work or improvement. The amount to be assessed against all property for any such proposed work or improvement shall be apportioned among the individual parcels in the manner designated by the Village Board.
If any property deemed benefited shall by reason of any provision of law be exempt from assessment therefor, such assessment shall be computed and shall be paid by the Village.
A parcel of land against which has been levied a special assessment for the sanitary sewer or water main laid in one of the streets upon which it abuts shall be entitled to such deduction or exemption as the Village Board determines to be reasonable and just under the circumstances of each case when a special assessment is levied for the sanitary sewer or water main laid in the other street upon which such corner lot abuts. Under any circumstance the assessment will not be less than the long way of such lot. The Village Board may allow a similar deduction or exemption from special assessments levied for any other public improvement.
[Amended 1-12-2004 by Ord. No. 3-04; 3-8-2010 by Ord. No. 2-10]
On the completion and filing of the report required in § 9-2C of this article, the Village Clerk shall give notice stating the nature of the proposed or approved work or improvement, the general boundary lines of the proposed assessment district, the place and time at which the report may be inspected and the place and time at which all interested persons, their agents or attorneys may appear before the Village Board or committee thereof and be heard concerning the matters contained in the preliminary resolution and report. Such notice shall be given either by publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the Village or posted in not fewer than three public places within the Village, and a copy of said notice shall be mailed to each interested person whose post office address is known or can be ascertained with reasonable diligence. The hearing shall commence not less than 10 days and not more than 40 days after the publication or posting of said notice.
After the hearing, the Village Board may approve, disapprove, modify or re-refer the report to the designated officer or employee with such directions as it deems necessary to change the plans and specifications so as to accomplish a fair and equitable assessment.
If an assessment is made against any property and an award of compensation or damage is made in favor of the property, the Village Board shall assess only the difference between such assessment of benefits and the award of compensation or damage.
If the work or improvement has not been previously authorized or approved, the Village Board shall approve the work or improvement and by resolution direct that the same be done and paid for in accordance with the report finally approved.
If the work or improvement has been approved by the Village Board or work commenced or completed prior to the filing of the report or prior to the hearing, then the Village Board shall by resolution confirm the report as made or modified and provide for payment in whole or in part by assessment.
The Village Clerk shall publish the final resolution as required in § 9-5 of this article.
[Amended 3-8-2010 by Ord. No. 2-10]
After the publication of the final resolution, any work or improvement provided for and not yet authorized shall be deemed fully authorized and all awards of compensation or damage and all assessments made shall be deemed duly and properly made, subject to the right of appeal by § 66.0703(12), Wis. Stats., or any other applicable provision of law.
If more than a single improvement is undertaken, the Village Board may combine the assessments as a single assessment on each property affected, except that the property owner may object to any one or more of said improvements.
[Amended 3-8-2010 by Ord. No. 2-10]
If, after completion or after the receipt of bids, the actual cost of any work or improvement is found to vary materially from the original estimate, or the assessment is void or invalid for any reason, or if the Village Board determines to reconsider an assessment, it is empowered, after giving notice as required in § 9-5, to amend, cancel or confirm any prior assessment, and notice of this amending, canceling or confirming shall be given by the Village Clerk as provided in § 9-6 of this article.
If the cost of the work or improvement is less than the assessment levied, the Village Board, without notice or hearing, shall reduce each assessment proportionately. If the assessment has been paid either in part or in full the Village shall refund the property owner such overpayment.
Pursuant to § 66.0703(12)(f), Wis. Stats., it shall be a condition to the maintenance of any appeal that any assessment appealed shall be paid when due and payable, and upon default in payment any such appeal shall be dismissed.
[Amended 12-9-1996 by Ord. No. 42-96]
Pursuant to § 66.0703(13), Wis. Stats., any special assessment levied under this article shall be a lien on the property against which it is levied on behalf of the Village. The Village Board shall provide for the collection of such assessments and may establish penalties for payment after the due date. All assessments not paid by the date specified shall be extended upon the tax roll as a delinquent tax against the property, and all proceedings in relation to the collection of such delinquent taxes shall apply to such assessment, except as otherwise provided by statute.
In addition to all other methods provided by law, special charges for current services may be imposed by the Village Board by allocating all or part of the cost to the property served. Such services may include snow and ice removal, weed elimination, street sprinkling, oiling and tarring, repair of sidewalks or curb and gutter, garbage and refuse disposal, recycling, stormwater management, including construction of stormwater management facilities, tree care, and soil conservation work under § 92.115, Wis. Stats. The Village Board may determine the manner of providing notice of a special charge, except that before a special charge for street tarring or the repair of sidewalks, curbs or gutters may be imposed, notice and a public hearing shall be provided as set forth in § 66.0627(3)(b), Wis. Stats.
[Amended 1-12-2004 by Ord. No. 3-04]
Such special charges shall not be payable in installments. If not paid within the period fixed by the Village Board, such delinquent charge shall become a lien as provided in § 9-11 of this article.
If any assessment or charge levied under this article is invalid because such statutes are found to be unconstitutional, the Village Board may thereafter reassess such assessment or charge pursuant to the provisions of any applicable law.
The Village Board may, without notice or hearing, levy and assess all or any part of the cost of any work or improvement upon the property benefited if notice and hearing are waived in writing by property owners affected.
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, or this article or other ordinance or resolution, it is specifically intended and provided by this article that the Village may levy special assessments for work or improvement against the property benefited either before or after the approval of the work plans and specifications, contracting for the work or completing the work or improvement.
[Added 6-11-2001 by Ord. No. 11-01; amended 6-14-2004 by Ord. No. 23-04; 10-10-2005 by Ord. No. 29-05]
Connection fee. When the owner of undeveloped property or property annexed to the Village requests that the Village connect said property to an existing public sanitary sewer, water main or stormwater facility, and where no special assessments for the public sanitary sewer, water main or stormwater facility and related improvements have been previously levied against said property for the benefits conferred upon the property by such improvements, the Village shall cause a connection fee to be charged to said benefited property as provided herein.
Village constructed improvements. Where the Village has financed and constructed the public sanitary sewer, water main or stormwater facility and related improvements, the Village shall charge a connection fee equal to the construction and related costs attributed to the benefiting undeveloped or annexed property at the time the Village levied special assessments for such improvements against benefited properties then in the Village, plus interest from the date of completion of construction at the same rate as set forth in the final resolution levying special assessments for the project. If no construction and related costs were attributed to said property, then the connection fee shall be based on the current costs for similar construction as determined by the Village Engineer. The connection fee shall be paid in a lump sum prior to connection to the public mains or facilities. However, the Village may by resolution approve an installment payment plan for the connection fee similar to an installment payment plan permitted by the Village for special assessments.
Private developer constructed improvements. Where a private project developer has financed, constructed and dedicated the public sanitary sewer, water main or stormwater facility and related improvements, the Village shall charge a connection fee equal to the construction and related costs attributed to the benefiting undeveloped or annexed property at the time of construction, plus simple interest from the date of completion of construction at the rate of 3% per annum, plus an administrative fee equal to 10% of such construction and related costs. The connection fee shall be determined by the Village Engineer. The connection fee shall be paid in a lump sum prior to connection to the public mains or facilities. The Village may refund the connection fee to the private project developer in accordance with the following:
A private project developer shall refer to the person or business organization which financed the total project cost and contracted for construction of the improvements.
A connection fee may be refunded to a qualifying private project developer on the condition that a provision for such refund is contained in a written agreement entered into between the Village and private project developer prior to construction of the improvements, and on the condition that the connection fee is collected by the Village within 15 years from the date of completion of construction of the improvement. After 15 years have elapsed, any claim for a connection fee refund shall be invalid.
To qualify for a connection fee refund, a private project developer must submit to the Village Clerk immediately after completion of construction a sworn affidavit stating the private project developer paid for the improvements serving properties other than the private project developer's own property for which the private project developer has not and will not receive other reimbursement, and written documentation as to the actual costs of construction of the improvements.
No person other than the original private project developer shall be eligible to claim or receive a connection fee refund. The Village, in its sole discretion, shall determine whether a refund shall be made after examining such evidence as the Village may require. The Village may request additional information from the private project developer other than that specified herein. A finding of incomplete or unsubstantiated evidence may be grounds for denial of the claim for refund.
The amount of the connection fee refund shall be the entire connection fee received by the Village, including interest, but excluding the ten-percent administrative fee to be retained by the Village for administration expenses.