Glenn County supervisors to reimburse Willows, Orland
The Glenn County Board of Supervisors has agreed to reimburse Willows and Orland money it overcharged as fees for collecting property taxes.
The board agreed to pay each city $105,000 plus an additional $3,000, provided that the latter goes directly to each city's library.
"We would like to support the libraries," Glenn County Supervisor Dwight Foltz said Monday. "Our intent was that the additional amount would be added to their operating budget."
The rest of the money, he said, can be used as each city sees fit.
The Orland City Council approved the agreement Monday, releasing the county from legal action.
Willows will act on the agreement at its meeting on Oct. 22, and could decide then what they want to do with the windfall.
The settlement stems from the November 2012 California Supreme Court ruling that Los Angeles County's methodology for charging its cities the property tax administration fee connected to the Vehicle License Fee swap and "Triple Flip" between the period of 2006 and 2012 was improper, officials said.
Glenn County used the same methodology, as did other counties throughout the state.
The county's settlement represents about three years of the overcharge, officials said.
On Monday, the Orland City Council directed $16,800 of the settlement to pay this year's payment on its loan from the city's water fund.
The board voted 3-1 against paying down the debt by 10 percent, but may consider a lump sum of $44,000 at its mid-year budget review.
The city owes the water fund about $450,000, said Councilwoman Salina Edwards, who cast the dissenting vote.
"It's not about what the council wants or needs," she said. "Our primary focus is water, fire and police."
Edwards said the city needs to pay down what it borrowed from that account so it would have money in case a well runs dry or other major work is needed.
Councilmen Bruce Roundy, Dennis Hoffman and Charles Gee voted to hold off until mid-year or the end of the budget year, as the city has a number of projects in the works, including the swimming pool project and library renovation.
The majority agreed to direct the remaining settlement money to the General Fund for future determination, although they anticipated some will be needed for the library project.
The council determined Monday it would use $6,300 of Community Development Block Grant re-use funds, and probably 11,000 from the settlement to improve lighting and replace the 40-year-old carpet that has become a safety issue.
The city anticipates that as much as $7,000 will be offset by a donation from the Friends of the Library, Carr said.
The City Council Monday also plans to make improvements for handicap access to the old Purity building on Fourth Street.
The City Council agreed Monday to lease the front of the 8,000 square-foot building to Julie van Tol, who plans to open a cafe and bakery.
The bakery will occupy 2,400 square-feet, leaving the rest of the building available for other businesses, officials said.
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