Alix Village Council will be offering a two-month discount on water and garbage utility billing after receiving a letter from a resident that was read at the regular council meeting on October 20.
The letter from Alix resident Margaret Barry was presented to councilors by the Village Administrative Director (CAO) Michelle White, said the letter was a complaint from Barry about how his 49th Street home was was affected during major infrastructure works last summer.
“I would like to register a formal complaint regarding the construction that took place this summer on 49th Street and 48th Avenue and the management of it by the village,” Barry’s October 5 letter said. “… I would officially request that the property taxes I paid for 2021 be refunded to us and the property taxes for 2022 be waived.
Readers should note that Barry’s letter listing the points of his complaint was over two pages long and, due to space constraints, cannot be printed in full here.
However, parts of it read: “We received absolutely no notification of impending water / sewer work or any information regarding construction or what would happen or what to expect.
“Due to construction, we were unable to access our property from the front of our house or use our side driveway. Barry explained that this caused two problems for his family, including the need to find storage space for their trailer, which included additional expenses and no garbage collection.
“For two weeks my garbage was not picked up because I didn’t know where to put my bin,” Barry said. “I ended up pushing him onto the road in front of my neighbor’s house, where he was finally picked up.”
Barry described other problems caused by the construction. “I only have one day off in the week which I use for laundry, housekeeping, baking, etc.,” the letter said.
“For two of those days my water was cut off, then my sewer was off,” adding that his family had been given a day’s notice by a card on their front door.
“Also, on a number of occasions, I couldn’t even access my garage from the alleyway due to construction on the street and construction of a garage in the alley.
“To add insult to injury, my husband was forced to park his truck out of the lane because our garage cannot hold two vehicles. He couldn’t park it next to the house as usual and it was robbed.
“I don’t think it would have happened if he had parked in the driveway next to the house where he has been parked for over two years.”
Barry said she was also surprised to learn from the village office that 49th Street would not be paved until next year. “Why would you want to start a job knowing you don’t have enough money to finish it?” She thought.
Contacted by the ECA Review on Oct. 22, White said the road needs a year to stabilize before asphalt can be laid.
“We have not budgeted for the additional funds needed to repav the road in 2021 so that it can settle for a year before the paving is finished,” said CAO, who added that it was is a common practice to prevent the pavement from falling and suffering. shame.
Barry said his request for exemption from property taxes for two years was related to how services in the village were affected by construction.
“We pay taxes to finance basic services, which I do not believe I have received this year, not to mention the inconvenience and costs that we have incurred, in my opinion, solely due to the lack of communication and management of the village” Barry said.
During the discussion, White said she phoned the owner of the property and apologized for the problems, explaining that the village had not realized how much the adjacent property would be affected by the service works. audience and noted that the appeal and apology “went well.”
White said Barry’s property is across the street from the project, but village staff did not realize that closing the project would affect them or that the lane was blocked.
Com. Tim Besuijen asked if the Barry family had come to the village office to complain. White said the Barries had phoned several times and the village public works department knew their garbage service was down, so they moved their trash can.
Com. Ed Cole said he was sympathetic to the Barrys but would not support their request. “There’s no way to exempt taxes for two years,” Cole said.
Mayor Rob Fehr agreed the Barries had had a rough ride and had not been properly briefed, but added that he was not in favor of the property tax refund or exemption.
Com. Barb Gilliat noted that the Barries have lost services and suggested that the village send a letter of apology and offer to pay off the Barry’s utility bills for July and August.
The councilors agreed by resolution to do so.