Local Improvement Districts
For projects over $50,000, Wasco County provides the administrative services of a Local Improvement District (L.I.D.) This is because the administrative costs for an L.I.D. are bout $5,000 due to the costs of bonding, detailed record keeping, and project coordination. Most L.I.D.'s will be constructed by contract. An L.I.D. will require payment by all adjacent property owners if the district is approved by a majority of the owners. The process for an L.I.D. is defined in the Oregon Revised Statutes Sections 371.605 through 371.660. Here is a summary of the process:
STEP ONE: PETITION
An L.I.D. may be initiated by a petition signed by 60% or more of the owners of the land representing 60% or more of the land abutting the proposed improvements. The petition documents to start the process are to be prepared by the Public Works Department.
STEP TWO: ENGINEER'S REPORT
An Engineer then prepares a report to recommend the method of assessment used to arrive at a fair apportionment of the improvements to the properties especially benefited. The report also includes an estimate of the amount to be assessed against each lot or parcel of land.
STEP THREE: NOTICE TO OWNER
If the Engineer's report is favorable, the County mails the owner of each parcel of land to be assessed for the proposed improvements a notice of the proposed improvements and the estimated amount of the assessment against their land.
STEP FOUR: OBJECTION PERIOD
The notice mailed in Step Three requires the owner to file a written notice with the County, within 20 days after the mailing of the notice, of any objections to the project. If written objections are received by the County by more than 50% of the owners of the land representing more than 50% of the land, the project is then abandoned.
STEP FIVE: IMPROVEMENTS MADE
If the L.I.D. is not abandoned in Step Four, the Wasco County Court may order the improvements to be made.
STEP SIX: ASSESSMENT ESTABLISHED
After the improvements have been completed, the Engineer compiles a report of all of the costs of the improvements and the amount proposed to be assessed against each property. The County Court, upon receiving this report, sets a hearing for objections to the report. All property owners are notified of the proposed amount of the assessment and of the time of the hearing. After the hearing, the County Court shall order the amount of assessment against each property.
STEP SEVEN: PAYMENT OF ASSESSMENT
After the County Court orders the assessments, the payments can be made in full or the owner will be allowed to pay for the assessment over a ten-year period of time with interest due on the unpaid portion. The interest rate has not been established at this time.
STEP EIGHT: LIEN
Any unpaid assessment becomes a lien against the property