Special Assessment Districts (SAD)
Public water mains and sanitary sewers are typically extended to
serve established neighborhoods by means of the special assessment
process. The Engineering and Environmental Services Department provides
petitions with cost estimates for future water and sewer extensions in
the planning phase of creating a Special Assessment District (SAD).
SAD Petition Process for Water or Sewer Construction
The creation of a special assessment district requires a petition
with estimated project costs to be circulated by the residents in the
proposed district. The petition must be signed by a majority of both
land area and homeowners. After a successful petition is submitted,
engineering plans and specifications are developed for public bidding.
The Township will hold two Public Hearings for those residents in the
proposed district before proceeding with the construction project and
establishing the special assessment. The financing of the project is
contingent upon the available funding at the time the petition is
submitted to the Township.
If the final special assessment cost after receiving sealed public
bids exceeds more than 10% of the cost presented on the petition, then
the project will be placed on hold for 30 days. A new petition may be
circulated with the updated bid cost in that 30 day period or the
project may not proceed. The actual final assessment cost will be billed
at the start of construction and may be financed for ten years at 6%
interest on the unpaid balance.
Contact the EESD by phone at 248.594.2800 for more information.
Creating a Special Assessment District for Road Paving Improvements
in Bloomfield Township
Public roads in residential subdivisions are owned by the Road
Commission for Oakland County (RCOC). Paving improvements in
subdivisions are commonly done through the RCOC using the Special
Assessment process. Another option is for Bloomfield Township residents
to request the Township to create a Special Assessment District, under
Public Act 188 of 1954, for paving subdivision roads. Through an
agreement with the RCOC, the Township can create a Special Assessment
District to pay for the road improvements.
In a Special Assessment District, the property owners benefiting from
the road paving project pay for the entire cost of the project through
an assessment. The project costs include the engineering, financing, and
construction of the project.
The creation of a Special Assessment District requires an official
petition, with estimated project costs, to be signed by the residents in
the proposed Special Assessment District. This petition must be signed
by a majority of the property owners in the proposed Special Assessment
District and also include the majority of the total frontage on the
road. After a successful petition has been approved by the Township
Board of Trustees, engineering plans and specifications are developed
for public bidding. The Township Board of Trustees will hold Public
Hearings for the residents in the proposed district before proceeding
with the construction and imposing the special assessment. The financing
of the project is contingent upon the available funding at the time the
petition is approved by the Township Board of Trustees.
The Michigan construction season is roughly six months, therefore
sufficient time for planning is recommended. Below is how a Special
Assessment District can be established for road improvements in a
residential subdivision through the Township:
- Township residents are encouraged to circulate an Expression of
Interest Form (found on the Bloomfield Township website) before
requesting an official petition from the Township. The purpose of
this form is to identify support for the road improvements from the
majority of the property owners in the subdivision. The RCOC
requires the Expression of Interest Form before they will proceed
with a preliminary plan and cost estimate. This document is not
required under Public Act 188 or by the Township. The use of the
Expression of Interest Form is at the Township’s discretion in
considering the need to prepare the official petition.
- The Expression of Interest Form is submitted to the Bloomfield
Township Engineering and Environmental Services Department (EESD).
The EESD will verify that more than 50% of the property owners are
interested in proceeding with a road improvement project. When
verified, the EESD will forward the completed Expression of Interest
Form to the RCOC for a preliminary engineering plan and a cost
estimate. The preliminary costs are based on information obtained by
the RCOC performing onsite surveys and taking pavement cores. It may
take the RCOC from six months to a year to provide this
comprehensive information back to the Township. In some cases where
the RCOC is not able to meet the Township’s schedule for paving
then, at the Township’s discretion, consulting engineers may provide
theses engineering services.
- The Township Engineering and Environmental Services Department (EESD)
will prepare the official Township petition for the project with the
preliminary cost estimate including engineering, financing and
construction. The official petition contains directions for the
petition circulator(s) and the property owners, as well as, a
description of the proposed Special Assessment District and the
scope of work. It takes the EESD about two to three weeks to
complete the petition documents.
- The official Township petition will be given to the residents
who provided the Expression of Interest Form. If a homeowner’s
association board is initiating the road improvement, the official
petition will be provided to the association’s board officers or
representatives. This official petition requires signatures that
represent the following: (1) more than 51% of the recorded owners of
land for the total frontage of the roads slated for improvement, and
(2) more than 51% of the property owners within the Special
Assessment District. It is recommended but not required under Public
Act 188, that the petition circulators present the official petition
to all property owners in the proposed Special Assessment District.
Any property owner not in favor of the project should not sign the
- The official Township petition must be returned to the Township
Assessor’s Office for verification of signatures. There is no
expiration date on a petition, but each petition identifies a target
return date necessary to meet the upcoming construction season.
- After the petition has been verified by the Township Assessor,
the Township Board of Trustees will consider accepting the official
petition at one of their regular meetings held on the second and
fourth Mondays of each month. If approved, the Township Board of
Trustees will set a date for the Public Hearing of Necessity. Formal
notice will be published by the Township Clerk for the Public
Hearing inviting comments on the proposed project from all property
owners within the district.
- At the Public Hearing of Necessity, the Township Board of
Trustees will listen to comments from property owners within the
district. The Township Board of Trustees will vote to proceed or
reject the project. If the Township Board of Trustees votes to
proceed, this authorizes the project’s design engineers to complete
the construction drawings and specifications for public bidding. At
this same meeting, the Township Board of Trustees will schedule the
Public Hearing of the Assessment Roll.
- The project will then be advertised for public bidding. After
actual sealed bids are received for construction, the EESD will
determine the total project costs. This cost is then used by the
Township Assessor to prepare the final assessment roll which
includes the cost assigned to each individual property owner. If the
assessment amount increases by more than 10% of the estimated cost,
Public Act 188 requires an additional public hearing before the
Public Hearing of the Assessment Roll meeting. At this additional
public hearing, the Township Board of Trustees will decide whether
or not to proceed with the project and continue with the Public
Hearing of the Assessment Roll. At the Public Hearing of the
Assessment Roll, property owners are given the opportunity to
comment on the final assessment. If the Township Board of Trustees
adopts the resolution confirming the assessment roll, the RCOC
engineers can proceed with the project. Residents within the
district have 30 days to appeal their assessment to the Michigan Tax
- Once the project is approved and the assessment confirmed, the
property owners will be invoiced their assessment concurrent with
the start of construction. Property owners have the option to pay
the assessment in full or finance the assessment up to fifteen (15)
years. Assessments being financed will be billed annually along with
their winter tax bill.
Contact the EESD by phone at 248.594.2800 for more information.
Newly Paved Roads