Water & Sewer Improvement Districts
An improvement district is a financing method for making public infrastructure improvements such as streets, water or sewer systems. The district consists of all land parcels within a defined area enclosed by a boundary.
Formation of an improvement district is initiated by a municipality or other governmental entity in reaction to an infrastructure deficiency identified by the entity, or brought to the attention of the entity by the citizenry, which falls short of community norms in terms of public welfare, health, or safety. Preliminary engineering is conducted to establish the proposed participants, each participant’s calculated benefit, and associated costs, which are then presented to those participants for consideration including a public hearing. Following the hearing, the entity can either abandon further consideration, or pass a Resolution of Intent to proceed with formation of the district.
If so passed, the proposed participants are allowed fifteen (15) days to provide a written protest letter to the City Clerk which clearly identifies the protestor, the parcel(s) owned, the name of the proposed improvement district, and the party’s opposition to the formation of the district in the proposed form. If a majority of the proposed participants file proper, written protests in the allotted time period, the entity will abandon further efforts to form the district for at least six (6) months, at which time the entity may attempt the district formation again.
If the district is formed, each participant can opt to pay for the calculated benefit/cost through an annual assessment added to their property tax bill (which includes interest), or pay in advance (avoiding associated interest). The duration of the assessment cannot exceed 25 years by statute, but could be of shorter duration, such as 20 years, depending on the lending source used to pay for the improvements at the time of construction.
If you have questions regarding any of these Improvement Districts, please contact Public Works at 928-777-1130.
Currently Proposed Water & Sewer Districts
Please see the Water & Sewer Construction Projects page for the latest information on proposed Water & Sewer Districts.
The City Council has held a series of public workshops to discuss possible funding mechanisms and mandatory versus non-mandatory connection processes in order to derive a City-wide, unsewered areas policy. The main points of discussion have centered on:
- whether a formal improvement district should be created in contrast to one or more City administered reimbursement districts,
- whether connection would be mandatory immediately, at some point in the future, or not at all,
- the financial impact to those who must connect but do not have the financial resources, and
- to what extent, if any, the City should provide funding to assist in alleviating this financial impact to proposed participants.
The Mayor and City Council have recently formed a citizens group with representatives from each unsewered area to continue this policy-forming activity. Any meetings by this group will be open to the public and advertised as such. Please check the upcoming City Council agendas to stay informed on planned, future policy-forming workshops.