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Chatfield to waive hookup fees for new homes

Mon, May 21st, 2012
Posted in Chatfield All

City Clerk Joel Young explained at the council’s May 14 meeting the recommendation of the Chatfield EDA to establish a trial period for a new incentive program to encourage construction of new single family homes. Councilors Dave Frank and Josh Thompson were absent.

Mayor Don Hainlen inquired if any of the councilors had plans through the end of the year to build a home that would be impacted by a fee waiver. None did.

The EDA recommendation to waive water and sewer hookup fees for single family new construction would be a savings of $4,200 for the owner or developer/builder. The hookup fee for water is $1,600 and the hookup fee for sewer is $2,600. The EDA has already been approached by a local develop/builder asking about the possibility of this type of program and has indicated with the program the builder would be interested in building a spec home.

There was concern over the waiving of the fee for sewer due to the large debt for the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Young suggested they are in a transition period as some people are talking about building and maybe the waiving of fees would stimulate building in Chatfield. He added there probably will be three or four new homes built regardless of what the councilors decide. Young said there is no way to gauge what impact the waiving of hookup fees would have.

The EDA said they would be willing to market the program. Councilor Paul Novotny noted the water fund is in good enough shape, but was concerned about the sewer fund. Hainlen maintained that if more homes were built due to the hookup fee waiver, the city’s tax base would be increased. Councilor Ken Jacobson insisted the EDA should market the program hard to a 50 mile radius around the city. He added that if more homes are built, it would be good for the sewer fund in the long run.

Councilor Russ Smith said it would only be an encouragement to those already considering building, but it may entice them to build in Chatfield.

Hainlen suggested they run the waiving of hookup fees to the end of 2012 and review the program before the end of the year. The council voted to allow the EDA to start marketing the no hookup fee program for new single family construction until the end of 2012. The program will start immediately.

Other Business In Brief

•The low quote of $13,300 from Municipal Pipe and Tool Company, Hudson, Iowa, was approved for the rehabilitation of seventeen manholes. WWTP superintendent Darryl Haner said the figure falls within his budget. He said the work is not a major rehab, but needs to be done.

•Jacobson reported that a survey will be sent to the citizens of Chatfield for the state audit performance measure program.

•May was declared National Preservation Month.

•The new warning sirens have been installed and the others upgraded. Olmsted County will test the sirens every Wednesday for three minutes from May to October. During the other months the sirens will be tested only on the first Wednesday of each month.

•During the recent city-wide clean up, about 40 tons was collected and removed at a cost of $8,143.84.

•Young introduced Jordan Boysen as the summer intern.

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