by Dennis Dalman
After lengthy conversations at several meetings since July, the Sartell City Council decided at its Oct. 8 meeting an assessment/hook-up-charge policy for parcels of property located along Pinecone Road N.
The council agreed unanimously to give owners of those parcels a $1,500 reduction for the costs of water and sewer hook-up charges and the waiver of a $450 annexation application fee.
The reductions apply only to property owners who request annexation into the city of Sartell by Dec. 31, 2019, so that hook-ups could be completed within a year from that date.
The properties, some developed, others undeveloped, are within a half mile on either side of Pinecone Road N., a road that is to be widened and illuminated because of the new high school being built at its northern end, near the current Oak Ridge Elementary School.
The estimated charge for sewer access charge by Sartell for 2019 is $3,075. The estimated water access charge is $3,821. That means the property owners along Pinecone Road, with discounts granted by the council, will only have to pay about half of that if they request annexation to the city. They will still have to pay about $350 for a water meter and a $25 annexation fee to Minnesota.
In addition, those property owners will be assessed for 35 percent of the costs of putting in the new road, but the city council agreed those road assessment costs (including lighting and some water-main work) should be capped at $8,000 per parcel. All but three of the 20 or so properties are outside the city limits. The area in question is the stretch of Pinecone Road from 15th Street N. to 27th Street N.
Sartell City Engineer Jon Halter told the council that the city has tried very hard to treat everybody affected as fairly as possible.
The council did approve some considerations for a few of the properties that were problematic, including the lot that is so much larger than usual.