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Council to review city's assessment districts
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The Turlock City Council will review the taxes levied on the city's assessment districts and the costs of maintaining those districts' streetlights, landscaping, slurry seals and street sweeping at their next meeting, set for Tuesday.

The Landscape and Lighting Act of 1972 and the Benefit Assessment Act of 1982 allow for the formation of special district areas so that developments can pay for their own ongoing maintenance. The City of Turlock currently has 192 assessment districts and benefit assessment areas with approximately $2.5 million in revenue.

By law, the City must file an annual report to the County Auditor-Controller's Office to place the assessments on the tax roll. The City must also produce an engineering report detailing the annual costs to each development.

A few of the early districts were set as fixed rates while the majority of the districts are tied to an index called the Engineering News Record, according to City Engineer and Director of Development Mike Pitcock. It is similar to a consumer price index but follows construction and maintenance trades and costs associated. In the last 12 months, the City has seen the ENR increase by  3.53 percent and  those districts tied to the ENR saw their costs increase by that percentage.

Assessment districts insure that maintenance impacts brought on by new development are paid for by those in the new development area and do not further impact the City’s budget, said Pitcock.

On Tuesday, the City Council is also expected to:

·         - Receive a presentation on Focus on Prevention by Stanislaus County Community Development and Empowerment Manager Ruben Imperial and Supervisor Vito Chiesa;

·        -  Receive a briefing on crime by Police Chief Robert Jackson; and

·         - Consider approving the Assyrian Fest 5K Walk/Run event using the public right-of-way from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Aug. 27. If approved, the proposed walk/run will be held as part of the Assyrian Festival scheduled for that same day at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds. The proposed route will begin at the fairgrounds and travel north on Soderquist Road, west on Fulkerth Road, south on Joett Drive and east between Joett Drive and Soderquist Road, utilizing the sidewalks between Summerfaire Park and the fairgrounds parking lot. This event will only use sidewalks and street closures will not be required for the walk/run.

The Turlock City Council will meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the Yosemite Room at City Hall, 156 S. Broadway.