Mowing fees for neglected properties in Wellington will be reduced following complaints from some residents.
The rates were hiked this past summer to cover the village’s cost of mowing overgrown yards. Now they are being lowered to $180 for the first quarter acre mowed and $50 for every quarter acre thereafter.
The $180 charge consists of $20 for inspection, $40 for mowing, $35 for equipment costs and fuel, $9 for letter writing and postage, $20 for clean-up, $8 for maintenance, $20 for invoicing, and $28 for tax lien preparation.
Village code authorizes the mowing of properties once grass or weeds exceed a height of eight inches. If a resident fails to pay the fees, they are added on to their local taxes.
“With the changes made last summer, there were some recurring costs that are not recurring on a quarter acre basis, like the administrative fees,” said village manager Steve Dupee. “We gave consideration to that and decided to go with the flat fee for everything past a quarter acre. It’s more reflective of the cost to the village.”
Dupee said nearly all properties the village mows are a quarter acre or less.
Under the old structure, a two-acre property would carry a $1,440 charge but now that is reduced to $530.
“We had to mow a lot north of town that was well over two acres and that played a large part in bringing the need for these changes to light,” Dupee said. “We wanted to correct that before the warmer weather comes around.”
“We have a resident with a bill of a couple thousand dollars,” said mayor Hans Schneider. “I think Steve has done a good job of looking at this and finding a solution that’s fair for all involved.”
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.