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Residents receive costs for Cedar Springs Drain

Day of Review planned for January 15 on ZOOM

By Judy Reed

Letters recently went out from the Kent County Drain Commission to residents in the Cedar Springs Drain district alerting residents to what their share of the cost will be to upgrade the drain.

The total cost (without interest) will be $1,971,453.94. The cost, with interest, over a 20-year period, will be $2,529.262.19. That cost will be shared by several entities:

The special district assessment (property owners) will pay 57.2 percent; 22.7 percent will come out of city road funds; the City of Cedar Springs will pay 18.86 percent of the cost; and Nelson Township 1.14 percent.

Residents in the drainage district have the option to either pay the total cost (without interest) up front (before bonds are issued) or they can choose to make an annual payment with interest when they make their winter tax payments. For many, the cost is between $100-$200 per year. But for some it’s much more.

For example, the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church owns three pieces of property. The total figure they will pay each year for all three is $1,301.85.

The American Legion is in a similar boat, with a payment of $1,562.84 each year.

The Sand Lake Land Company LLC (the Wall family), owners of property at 333 E. Ash St, which is at the east end of Ash Street, will pay $2,961 yearly.

There are several others as well, including business owners and landlords, who will pay much more.

The City of Cedar Springs is taking a double hit, with $28,822 yearly coming out of the city road fund, and $23,846 out of the city at-large. Do they have the money for that?

“The City did reserve $25,000 in the budget this fiscal year to get a head start on the anticipated at-large and road assessment costs for the County’s drain project,” said Cedar Springs City Manager Mike Womack. “We now see that the anticipated cost for those assessments to be paid for by the City government will be on the order of about $52,000 per year, not the $25,000 that we originally planned for.

 “Like everybody else, the City government will be tightening its belt a little bit and seeing where we can delay some projects and reduce costs in order to pay this bill.  The City has operated a conservative budget over the last several years and is in a healthy condition to absorb these types of blows. Thankfully, we have a couple of bonds and installment purchases that will be finished up in the next couple of years which will free up some money to be shifted to this payment. 

“In the last couple of years, the City’s economic development plans have made the City an attractive place for both businesses and residential homes to be built and occupied.  Those new homes and businesses have increased the tax base for the community which makes paying for these types of projects a little bit less painful,” he added.

The Cedar Springs Drain is a closed storm sewer system which serves properties within the City of Cedar Springs and Nelson Township by collecting the storm water runoff from properties and roads within the drainage district. The drain is over 80 years old and is being relocated.

The Post asked the Drain Commission what their timeline for the construction is. “We anticipate the construction to begin at the end of March,” said Angie Latvaitis, Deputy Drain Commissioner. “At this time, the contractor has not provided a schedule for completion.”

Dean’s Excavating won the bid on the project. The work includes approximately 760 feet of 60-inch by 38-inch elliptical concrete storm sewer and 815 feet of 45-inch by 29-inch elliptical concrete storm sewer with an average depth of seven feet. The project also includes 2,600 square yards of road restoration, lowering water mains, concrete drive restoration, and concrete curb and gutter. 

There will be a Day of Review of the drainage district boundaries and review of apportionments for residents on Friday, January 15. The meeting will be held via ZOOM. Meeting ID: 921 1482 5722 Passcode: 1152021 Call-In#: 1 646 876 9923.

If you have questions prior to the Day of Review, you can email drinfo@kentcountymi.gov and they will provide you with information. Or you can telephone their office at (616) 632-7910.

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Ray Winnie
Intandem Credit Union


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