Local residents may receive a letter notifying them of an opportunity to participate in a reimbursement agreement. This is an agreement between a governing body (City of Flagstaff) and a developer who pays for an extension of city infrastructure (water, sewer, or reclaimed piping system) for their project.
The developer is allowed to offer this benefit – connection to the new infrastructure – to potential residents within the project area and be reimbursed by additional users, to offset those initial costs, through the reimbursement agreement. View a sample contract here.
Currently, Coconino County is the developer of a sewer main extension to the Fort Tuthill area, enabling surrounding residents to participate in connecting to City sewer.
- Why am I receiving this fee notice?
Coconino County opted to pay for and construct a sewer main extension from the University Heights neighborhood to Fort Tuthill Park to serve their current and future wastewater needs. The extension of this main provides a benefit to other properties within the area, and a reimbursement agreement allows the County to be reimbursed for some of these expense from properties that may connect in the future.
- What is a reimbursement/recapture agreement?
This is an agreement authorized by State statute and further define in City of Flagstaff City Code chapter 7-08. These agreements are entered into between a governmental body (The City) and a developer (Coconino County in this case) who chooses to pay for the extension of infrastructure (in this case a sewer main). The cost to extend this infrastructure can be a significant financial investment, and these agreements allow developers to be reimbursed for costs of this infrastructure that provide a benefit to others.
A copy of the agreement entered into between the City of Flagstaff and Coconino County can be found here.
- What was the total cost of construction of the sewer main?
$2,228,461.19. The total reimbursement amount shared by all benefitting parcels is $1,702,464.31. The reimbursement amount was reduced by contributions made by the City of Flagstaff, and portions that were only a benefit to Fort Tuthill Park.
- How was my fee calculated?
The total reimbursement amount of the sewer main construction was divided proportionately based on the total area of each benefitting parcel, which also included Fort Tuthill Park. The total benefitting area was determined through an engineering analysis based on topography of the area. Each benefitting parcel has a calculated percentage of that total area, and that percentage is multiplied times the total cost of the total reimbursement amount. The larger a parcel is, the higher their percentage is of the total benefitting area, and the higher their reimbursement payment is.
- Why do I need to pay a fee, and do I need to connect to the new sewer?
Property owners are only obligated to pay the fee presented in the letter in the event they choose to tie into the City’s sewer collection system. If they don’t choose to tie in, they are not obligated to pay any fee.
- Do I need to connect to the new sewer main?
Property owners that have existing septic systems are not obligated to connect to the new sewer main. Requirements of new construction for septic systems and connections to existing sewer collection systems can be found in the AZ Administrative Code Section R18-9-A309.
- How do I pay my fee today?
A fee can only be paid in association with the necessary permitting for connection to the sewer collection system. In most cases additional work and permitting will be required. At a minimum, a Right of Way permit application and the associated submittal documents must be submitted to the City of Flagstaff for review and permitting. A copy of this application can be found here.
- Is this part of the hospital development?
This sewer system construction is not directly related to the hospital development. The hospital development will be required to pay their proportional reimbursement fee as part of the development requirements.
- If I don’t tie in will I need to pay in the future?
A fee is only required if the property connects to the City sewer collection system in the future. If a connection is not made a fee is not required.
- Does this impact my drinking water source?
No. There is no requirement to connect to City water. In many cases, the infrastructure does not currently exist to connect to the City water system.