ULID Questions and Answers


 

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ULID Formation Questions and Answers

(2015 version, Metro Treatment Area)

The following questions have been raised during the formation of previous Utility Local Improvement Districts (ULIDs). Valley View Sewer District has prepared this brochure in an effort to answer the following questions prior to the formation of a ULID. If your questions are not answered after reading this information please contact the District at (206) 242-3236.

How do I know my area needs sewers?

Nothing is more basic to public health and disease prevention than vigilance and thoroughness of environmental sanitation. For most of the urbanized areas of King County there is no way of meeting these needs without a public sewer system. The District is the local tool to help you accomplish this goal.

Some of the warning signs which may indicate the need for sewers include:

  • Your septic tank needs pumping more often then normal, even though your water consumption has not increased.
  • Excess dampness over the septic drain field area.
  • Unusual sewage odors in or around your house and yard.

How are assessments established?

Prior to the formation hearing preliminary engineering is performed to develop one or more construction plans. These alternative plans are analyzed for their ability to provide sewer service to the properties involved at the lowest possible cost. Once a preliminary design is selected it is used to establish the estimated total project cost and the total assessments to be charged against the properties in the ULID.

How are assessments computed?

In calculating the assessments for the properties, the following factors are taken into consideration: area; frontage on the sewer line; zoning; land use; and number of potential building sites.

How are assessments paid?

After a public assessment roll hearing (with notice) the final assessments are confirmed and filed with King County. Property owners are then notified that the assessment has been filed and are given two methods by which to pay the assessment:

  • The first method is full payment in cash within 30 days of publication of the first notice. If so paid, no interest charges will be applied.
  • The second method allows the assessment to be financed over 15-20 years and collected by King County. The first installment will be due one year from the publication of the first notice. Each year one-fifteenth to one-twentieth of the principal amount, plus simple interest on the principal balance, will be due. Recent interest rates on the installments have been in the 4.5% to 5.5% range.

Are there any government programs to assist a property owner in the payment of assessments and/or side sewer costs?

Possibly, provided funds are available and the property owner qualifies. At this time, however, government assistance programs are limited. In the past, King County, with Housing and Urban Development funds, has had loan and/or grant programs to assist low income residents with side sewer costs. In addition, retired persons 62 years of age and older, or disabled persons, may qualify to defer payment on their assessment.

What is the General Facilities Charge and the Metro Capacity Charge?

The General Facility Charge, currently $4033.00 per unit (effective April 1st, 2015) , is due at the time that you choose to connect to sewers. This charge can be financed with the District.

The Sewage Treatment Capacity Charge is collected by King County for all new connections to sewers, and is due after you connect to sewers. It is billed directly by King County. You will have the option of payment in full, or you can pay over time. This Charge does increase on a yearly basis.

These are one time only charges.

What is the Monthly Service Charge after connection to sewer?

Residences within the ULID pay a monthly sewer service charge after connection to sewers. As of January 2015 the charge for a single-family dwelling is $54.05 each month, billed bimonthly.

What construction is the property owner’s responsibility after the District has constructed the main lines?

The property owner must pay for installation of the side sewer from the District’s stub at the property line to the plumbing outlet from the residence. The side sewer may be installed by the property owner or by a District approved side sewer contractor.

A side sewer permit must be obtained from the District, and the side sewer installation must be inspected and approved by the District. Currently side sewer permits cost $100.00.

 

If you have any further questions or any circumstances which are unique to your property you may contact the District at (206) 242-3236.

Procedure Schedule

Step ULID Summary Time Required
1 Formation requested by Property Owners
2 Board approves preliminary engineering to identify project costs and assessments. Engineering completed, petitions prepared. 1-2 months
3 Petitions carried by Property Owners 1-(?) months
4 Petitions turned in and Certification of Signatures. 2 weeks
5 Board sets public formation hearing date, legal notice published, notification of hearing sent to all property owners inside the ULID 1-2 months
6 Formation hearing held, and beginning of appeal period. ULID formed. 1-2 months
7 Final Project Engineering and Construction Bidding 2-4 months
8 Public hearing on Final Assessment Roll held after Construction Bidding
9 Construction 4-6 months
TOTAL 12-16(?) months

 

Cost to connect to sewers for a typical residential lot

(Includes: assessment, side sewer connection, GFC*, metro charge**)
Year     Typical Cost
1960     $500 – $750
1970     $2,000 – $2,300
1980     $3,500 – $4,500
1990     $5,500 – $6,500
2000     $12,000 -$14,000
2015     $25,000 -$30,000

*General Facilities Charge. Currently $4,033.00
** Metro charge calculated based on payment in full.. Currently $8,299.43.