Detrimental Impact

Red Lodge

To the Editor,

The Realtor members of the Red Lodge Multi List Service are opposed to the proposed water maintenance fees for vacant lots suggested in City of Red Lodge Resolution -3450.

It is our belief that the proposed fees will have a very detrimental impact on the affected vacant lots, the Red Lodge Real Estate market and ultimately on tax collections.

The proposed fee structure is exceedingly high for those lots who are getting no current benefit. The resolution proposes that a vacant lot with a curb stop will be charged $19.13 per month, or $229.56 annually. Relative to the taxes on the lot, that is in many cases over 80 percent of the annual property taxes. At the Golf Course for instance, their annual “taxes and fees” will increase from $280 to $509.

The effect of such an increase will be that many of these owners of vacant lots will place them on the market to sell. The market for city lots is already at a 10 year low. More lot inventory will only push values even lower that will quickly affect their taxable value and in the long run affect the City’s income from property tax collections.

Additionally, this excessive financial burden on these vacant lots will make owning a lot for future development in the City unattractive. The end result could be that building and development will be pushed out of the City limits to areas and subdivisions without City services. The ongoing vitality of the City of Red Lodge depends on encouraging development within the City limits. The fees are being proposed primarily on the newest infrastructure in the City of Red Lodge’s system. The majority of the vacant lots within the City limits are at Red Lodge Country Club Estates, Diamond C Links, The Spires and although not in the city limits, Grand View at Remington Ranch. In these cases the developer, not the City, installed these City services at a huge expense to the developer. At The Spires not only did they install all the services, their annexation agreement required that they paid the City of Red Lodge $150,000 in cash for “future improvements.” It would seem that they have already paid more than their fair share of a “maintenance fee.”

Lots in Grand View at Remington benefit from City sewer but are not in the City limits giving them no representation on the City council or any vote on City issues such as this fee increase.Surprisingly, the vacant lots in town with the oldest infrastructure do not have curbs stops so they are exempt from this fee in the proposed resolution.

While we recognize the need to maintain City infrastructure, this is not a fair or equitable manner to do so.

We urge the City of Red Lodge to reconsider Resolution -3450 as it applies to vacant lots.


The Realtor Members

of the Red Lodge

Multi List Service


Upcoming Events

  • Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, June 21, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Monday, June 24, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, June 25, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, June 27, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.

The Carbon County News

Street Address:

11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 970, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Phone: 406-446-2222

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