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Posted on: March 25, 2022

Public Hearing

DOWNTOWN SAA

Notice of a Proposed DOWNTOWN PARKING ASSESSMENT AREA DESIGNATION

Notice of a Proposed DOWNTOWN PARKING ASSESSMENT AREA Designation 

Public Notice is hereby given that the Vernal City Council proposes to designate the block West of Vernal Ave and South of Main Street as the DOWNTOWN PARKING ASSESSMENT AREA (ASSESSMENT AREA), in the City of Vernal, Uintah County, Utah, for the purpose of, providing additional downtown parking for the public and the businesses on that block and for landscaping and appurtenant improvements. The assessment will be to pay some or all of the costs of the operation and maintenance of the improvements by an assessment as provided in Chapter 11, Title 42, UCA, 1953, as amended, on the property and business within said ASSESSMENT AREA for the benefit of the property being assessed. The term of the ASSESSMENT AREA is twenty (20) years beginning when the ordinance is enacted. 

The proposed ASSESSMENT AREA is shown in ATTACHMENT A. The general description of the ASSESSMENT AREA includes all properties located in the block south of Main Street to 100 South and between Vernal Ave and 100 West. The ASSESSMENT AREA may be expanded in the future. The improvements proposed will include the following: 

  • Install storm drainage as needed to manage storm water runoff; 
  • Improve existing parking area to meet ADA requirements; 
  • Install landscaping; 
  • Relocate or install lighting; 
  • Re-grade and asphalt the parking area; 
  • Install water and sewer utility upgrades; 
  • Pedestrian walkways; 

The City of Vernal proposes to levy an assessment on benefitted property within the ASSESSMENT AREA to pay some or all the costs of operation and maintenance of the parking area and improvements according to the estimated benefits to the property from the improvements in installments over a period of twenty (20) years. ATTACHMENT B provides a diagram identifying the locations of the proposed improvements. This notice mailed to a specific owner of property to be assessed within the proposed ASSESSMENT AREA, the estimated total assessment specific to the benefitted property for which this notice is mailed is provided in ATTACHMENT C. The total costs for the improvements have been estimated by a project engineer and are based on recent prices of construction in Vernal. The specific items that are included in the proposed ASSESSMENT AREA are included in the cost estimate provided in ATTACHMENT D. The estimated total costs for the project improvements are $1.3 million which will be paid entirely by the City and by grants and other funding. ONLY THE COST OF OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE OF THE PARKING FACILITIES WILL BE PAID BY AN ASSESSMENT TO BE LEVIED AGAINST THE PROPERTIES abounding, abutting upon, benefitted by, or adjacent to the parking area which will be benefitted by said improvements. Assessment shall be levied based on gross square feet of building floor space. The total estimated costs of the proposed improvements to be paid by the City of Vernal are $1.3 million, the total costs of constructing the improvements to be paid by Property owners is $0.00. 

The City of Vernal will provide the financing for the construction of this project. The abutting and benefitted property owners will be assessed for operation and maintenance costs only. The operation and maintenance assessment shall be billed by the City on the water and sewer billing and shall paid by the Assessment Area property owners in monthly installments beginning at the completion of the improvements: or the property owner may elect to make annual payments in advance at the beginning of each year. The monthly assessment will be billed to each landowner in the Assessment Area having a building located on their land. The assessment for new construction shall begin upon certificate of occupancy or 90 days after a building permit issues, whichever is first. If the assessment is not paid when due it may be collected by inclusion on a property tax notice issued in accordance with UCA 59-2-1317 and in compliance with UCA 11-42-501 et seq. or may be collected by other enforcement action. Delinquent amounts shall bear interest until paid at the rate of eight percent (8.0%) per annum, and the landowner is responsible for any costs or expenses of collection. 

The estimated annual costs of operation and maintenance of the parking facilities including upkeep, cleaning and trash removal, lighting, snow removal etc. is $30,000 per year for approximately 140 parking spaces. The assessment of property owners for operation and maintenance is expected to generate $15,000 toward that expense. The rest of the expense will be covered by Vernal City. Assessments to each property owner in the Assessment Area will be based on the gross square footage of the floor space of the building or buildings on the owner's real property. For each 600 square feet of the building floor space, (or fraction thereof, of 50% or greater), whether occupied or not, the property owner will be assessed $10 per month. To offset cost increases the City may increase the monthly assessment by up to 3% per calendar year by motion at a City Council meeting, after mailed notice to affected property owners. Pursuant to Utah Code Ann. Section 11-42-401 (7) the initial assessment shall be levied over a period of time not exceeding five (5) years. The duration of the ASSESSMENT AREA is twenty (20) years, the operation and maintenance levy amount will be set in five (5) year periods. The City may renew the assessment for up to three (3) additional five (5) year terms in accordance with the statute. Non-renewal may result in termination of services. 

Landowners that provide parking spaces, on their own land, in the assessment area, and pay all operation and maintenance expenses, shall be credited against their assessment the sum of $10 for each public parking space provided. 

On May 4, 2022, the City Council and Mayor will meet at 7:00 pm at the City Council Chambers located at 374 East Main Street, Vernal, Utah to hear and consider any comments to the proposed improvements or to the creation of the ASSESSMENT AREA. ANY PROTEST TO THE DESIGNATION OF THE ASSESSMENT AREA OR TO BEING ASSESSED FOR THE OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE COSTS MUST BE FILED IN WRITING WITHIN 60 DAYS of the hearing date. Any protests to the proposed ASSESSMENT AREA shall be in writing and signed by the owner or owners of the property that is proposed to be assessed who does not want the property to be included in the ASSESSMENT AREA. The written protest shall contain a description of the owners' property (lot, block, address, etc.) and shall be filed with (received by) the City Recorder, Vernal City Offices, 374 East Main, Vernal, Utah on or before 5:00 pm on July 5, 2022. The creation of the ASSESSMENT AREA shall be abandoned if the necessary number of protests have been timely filed. The necessary number of protests means protests representing at least forty percent (40%) of the square frontage of all buildings on the property to be assessed, If the ASSESSMENT AREA is established a Board of Equalization will be appointed to resolve any challenges to the assessment amounts as set forth in the Ordinance or Resolution. 

The Attachments referenced in this notice will be mailed to the individual property owners along with this notice and are available at: 

The City of Vernal website https://www.vernalcity.org; and the State Public Meeting Notice website at: http://pmn.utah.gov

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