Minutes of Special Town Board Meeting

December 13, 2005



The Watab Town Board held a special meeting on Tuesday, December 13, 2005 in the meeting room at Rumors. Board members present were Supervisors Craig Gondeck, Lloyd Erdmann and Brad McIntosh and Clerk Pat Spence. Also participating in the meeting was township engineer Bob Erickson. The meeting was called to order by Chair Erdmann at 10:15am. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss a road assessment policy that would help the township raise funds to develop and maintain roads and other infrastructure caused by new developments.


Supervisor Gondeck recommended that the town board establish a document folder for each proposed development; this folder would contain all agendas, minutes, documents, hearings, plats, etc. related to the development. A copy of the folder would be turned over to the county before they take any action. He also made a motion, which was seconded by Lloyd, to require all developers to be on the posted agenda before they bring anything to the town board. Motion passed unanimously.


Supervisor Erdmann recommended having a township plat review committee. Supervisor Gondeck said that he learned from Livonia Township officials that they charge developers a fee to review their plat.  Supervisor McIntosh had contacted the Minnesota Association of Township Attorney and shared information that special assessments are valid if: (1) the property assessed gets a special benefit, (2) the assessment is uniformly applied, and (3) the assessment does not exceed the amount the property value increases because of the improvements.  Pat shared information from an article on a Mitigation Payment System used in King County, Washington. Their policy provides funding for transportation road improvements necessary to mitigate the traffic impacts of new development on the roadway system. In that county, fees are assessed to anyone who engages in development activity when they meet both of these conditions: (1) they apply for a development permit to construct, expand or complete a building or structure, whether residential or commercial, change the use of a building, or when they apply for a short plat or formal subdivision; and (2) the development proposal results in an increase in the number of p.m. peak vehicle trips. The Clerk also shared information from a report by economists at Rutgers University on the costs of urban sprawl. One example was that in Culpeper County, Virginia, the average new residential unit can be expected to produce a deficit in the county budget of $1,242 in 1988 dollars!


After a great deal of discussion, the board passed the following motion which was made by Supervisor McIntosh and seconded by Supervisor Erdmann:


Effective December 13, 2005 a $500 fee per lot will be paid by a developer at the time of the final plat approval. A 1% fee per lot of the sale price of the lot is to be paid by the purchaser or home owner or developer (legal counsel will advise which is best). One-half per cent additional fee is to be paid based on the building permit amount. All fees are to be paid before the building permit is issued. At the time of the final plat, appraised value of the lot shall be determined and approved by the town board. (This motion is subject to review and approval of the township attorney and is effective December 13, 2005). The purpose of the fees is to offset costs created by new development.

This action will be reviewed by our attorney and his opinion will be requested.


The meeting was adjourned and the Clerk was asked to forward the minutes and other documents to the township attorney.


                        Respectfully submitted by Pat Spence, Clerk