February 9, 2011

Watford City to host annexation open house

By Tina Foreman
Farmer Staff Writer

During the Dec. 13 meeting of the Watford City City Council, it was approved to add just over 700 acres to Watford City through annexation. The annexation will include tracts of property to the north, south, east and west of the current Watford City city limits.
All of the annexations have been requested by the property owners, so the city does not anticipate any problems or delays in the annexation process.
One step in the annexation process is receiving public input on the proposed annexation, a step that will be completed through an annexation open house. The open house is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 10 at 5:30 p.m. in the Heritage Room at the Watford City City Hall.
“The purpose of the open house is to bring information to those being annexed, as well as others in the area who want to know the benefits of annexation,” says Lowell Cutshaw, Watford City city engineer/administrator. “The city is not proposing that anyone be annexed that has not petitioned for it, but we want to make sure that those in the annexation area have all of the information needed to make an informed decision.”
At the open house, Cutshaw will have examples of property tax costs for agriculture, business and residential properties, so people can compare their current county tax rates to what their rates would be if they were to be annexed into Watford City.
“We encourage anyone wanting to know the benefits of annexation to attend the meeting,” adds Cutshaw.
According to Cutshaw, some benefits of being annexed into the city include police protection, cheaper water rates, local garbage collection and the biggest draw, sewer service.
“There are a number of reasons to be annexed, but the sewer service is by far the most popular,” comments Cutshaw. “Many of the larger properties don’t want to be on a septic system, and by being annexed, they don’t have to worry about that.”
In addition to the tax comparisons, Cutshaw will be available to answer questions along with Mayor Brent Sanford, the city attorney, and a representative from AE2S, an engineering firm with which the city is working.