When is a “delinquent” subdivision fee not “really” delinquent?
When it’s owed to City of Lebanon, which has a decades-long policy of collecting final subdivision fees when lots sell.
The fees sparked typically inconclusive City Council discussion last week. No one had clear data about the law or the alleged debts, or what the ordinance should say, and so the exercise was pointless.
The fees aren’t exactly “delinquent,” it seems. Because no one is building, no permits are being issued, so no subdivision fees are being collected. The crash four years ago continues to hamstring home building here.
The developers have been dunned, said City Clerk Laina Starnes. She plans to charge 8 percent interest on their balances due. That’s a hefty lug, since the prime mortgage rate hovers around 3 percent these days.
In a related matter, Councilman Brian Anthony said he had majority support some time ago for an ordinance requiring that prospective City board members be paid up on all City accounts. Anthony wondered what happened to his ordinance.
Don’t be too hasty about accounts receivable, City Administrator Chris Heard warned Council. He said strict qualifications would limit Council’s free labor pool for committee posts.
Heard launched a rhetorical exercise philosophizing about corporations and individuals, asking if a corporation owes the City then do all individuals connected with that corporation owe the City, and what constitutes “arrears” anyway, and blah blah blah. Speaking of receivables, it seems Landlord Lebanon hasn’t collected rent from at least two tenants for many months.
A year ago, we learned that Homestead Contracting, an “incubator” business, skipped out of the Allen Building without even starting to make five years’ worth of lease payments to replace cash spent by the City’s Electric Reserve to renovate the Homestead homestead.
For the complete column, see today's print edition of The Daily Record, or view the e-Edition online.