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                            CHAPTER 402-H.F.No. 2375 
                  An act relating to local improvements; requiring a 
                  report to show the need and cost-effectiveness of 
                  local improvements; prohibiting fees for preparing 
                  certain reports from being based primarily on the 
                  estimated cost of improvement; amending Minnesota 
                  Statutes 1994, section 429.031, subdivision 1. 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1994, section 429.031, 
        subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
           Subdivision 1.  [PREPARATION OF PLANS, NOTICE OF HEARING.] 
        Before the municipality awards a contract for an improvement or 
        orders it made by day labor, or before the municipality shall 
        have the power to may assess any portion of the cost of an 
        improvement to be made under a cooperative agreement with the 
        state or another political subdivision for sharing the cost of 
        making such the improvement, the council shall hold a public 
        hearing on the proposed improvement following two publications 
        in the newspaper of a notice stating the time and place of the 
        hearing, the general nature of the improvement, the estimated 
        cost, and the area proposed to be assessed.  The two 
        publications shall must be a week apart, and the hearing shall 
        must be at least three days after the last second publication.  
        Not less than 10 days before the hearing, notice thereof shall 
        of the hearing must also be mailed to the owner of each parcel 
        within the area proposed to be assessed, but failure to give 
        mailed notice or any defects in the notice shall does not 
        invalidate the proceedings.  For the purpose of giving mailed 
        notice, owners shall be are those shown to be such as owners on 
        the records of the county auditor or, in any county where tax 
        statements are mailed by the county treasurer, on the records of 
        the county treasurer; but other appropriate records may be used 
        for this purpose.  However, as to For properties which that are 
        tax exempt or subject to taxation on a gross earnings basis and 
        are not listed on the records of the county auditor or the 
        county treasurer, the owners thereof shall may be ascertained by 
        any practicable means, and mailed notice shall must be given 
        them as herein provided in this subdivision.  Prior to Before 
        the adoption of such a resolution ordering the improvement, the 
        council shall secure from the city engineer or some other 
        competent person of its selection a report advising it in a 
        preliminary way as to whether the proposed improvement 
        is necessary, cost-effective, and feasible and as to whether it 
        should best be made as proposed or in connection with some other 
        improvement. and The report must also include the estimated cost 
        of the improvement as recommended; but.  No error or omission in 
        such the report shall invalidate invalidates the proceeding 
        unless it materially prejudices the interests of an owner.  If 
        the report is not prepared by an employee of a municipality, the 
        compensation for preparing the report under this subdivision 
        must be based on the following factors: 
           (1) the time and labor required; 
           (2) the experience and knowledge of the preparer; 
           (3) the complexity and novelty of the problems involved; 
           (4) the extent of the responsibilities assumed. 
           The compensation must not be based primarily on a 
        percentage of the estimated cost of the improvement. 
           The council may also take such other steps prior to the 
        hearing, including, among other things, the preparation of plans 
        and specifications and the advertisement for bids thereon, as 
        that will in its judgment provide helpful information in 
        determining the desirability and feasibility of the 
        improvement.  The hearing may be adjourned from time to time, 
        and a resolution ordering the improvement may be adopted at any 
        time within six months after the date of the hearing by vote of 
        a majority of all members of the council when the improvement 
        has been petitioned for by the owners of not less than 35 
        percent in frontage of the real property abutting on the streets 
        named in the petition as the location of the improvement.  When 
        there has been no such petition, the resolution may be adopted 
        only by vote of four-fifths of all members of the council; 
        provided that if the mayor of the municipality is a member of 
        the council but has no vote or votes only in case of a tie, the 
        mayor shall is not be deemed to be a member for the purpose of 
        determining such a four-fifths majority vote.  The resolution 
        ordering the improvement may reduce, but not increase, the 
        extent of the improvement as stated in the notice of hearing. 
           Presented to the governor March 29, 1996 
           Signed by the governor April 2, 1996, 10:18 a.m.

Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes