De-annexing from a district a chore
June 5, 2012
At a public hearing last month regarding the North Summit Recreation District, residents raised the question of how to remove their property from a special service district that they feel does not benefit them.
Numerous residents said they would like to remove their property from the North Summit Recreation District rather than face the possibility of paying more property taxes to finance an $ 8.5 million recreation center.
According to Summit County Clerk Kent Jones, since the North Summit Recreation District public hearing a month ago, no one has applied to de-annex their property from a special service district.
"Individual property owners can apply to have their parcel of land removed from a district," Jones said. "But they have to prove that they receive no benefit from being part of the district. It has to be more than ‘I won’t use the recreation building’ because there are other aspects of the district that could benefit them, for example, lower taxes because of healthy county initiatives or something."
To de-annex from a special service district, residents must send a letter to the clerk’s office requesting removal. A public hearing is then held and the Summit County Council and legal staff decide if the resident really receives no benefit from being a part of the district.
Jones said that if the district has incurred any debt by taking out a bond, it becomes significantly more complicated for residents to remove their property from a district because they were included in the bond amount through a bank.
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"Once any kind of debt is involved, it becomes a legal process," Jones said. "People have objected to a district before it was formed and been excluded from it. And entire districts have been dissolved, but I have never seen an individual property-owner remove themselves from a district."
Kent added that if multiple property owners or an entire neighborhood tried to remove themselves from a special service district it would probably carry more weight than an individual owner.
The $8.5 million bond North Summit Recreation Facility Bond will be on the June 26 primary ballot.