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If you get a letter from the City of Rochester, Minnesota, saying the sidewalk in front of your home needs repairs and here's the cost, your first call shouldn't be to the Rochester Public Works Department because you could end up with a $100.00 charge.

photo by Andy Brownell/Townsquare Media-Rochester

Today, Rochester's 5th Ward Councilmember Shaun C Palmer was on Rochester Today. We were talking about various things, then the topic of sidewalk and street assessments came up...

James Rabe: We're talking about assessments and boy, is it a hot topic on social media in person, people get really annoyed when they see that they have to pay X number of dollars for (fixing) a sidewalk...

Shaun Palmer: And, and we have to have a program...every 20 years, we go through a neighborhood and...we go out and we mark an X or a line on it. And then we send out a letter that says this is what it's going to be, this to be the most cost.  And then the homeowner can...can hire somebody on their own. And it costs a hundred dollars for the fee. And in one of the little nuances that people don't realize is if I don't like that and I want to call public works and say, Hey, you know, I want to talk to you about it. We charge you a hundred dollars."

How can you avoid that $100 fee? Call your Rochester City Councilmember.  Palmer says he gets those calls and he'll head out and talk to the person about it, tell 'em what the deal is, why it is, and the options.

So there's a quick way to save $100. 

If sidewalk or street assessments bother you, please, click play and listen to the conversation. We also talk how the assessments are set for projects like on North Broadway (it's not the whole property value that gets assessed). Then, if you have any questions, talk to your councilmember (scroll for info below). 

Download the automatically generated transcript here.

Kim David, Townsquare Media

Rochester City Council Contact Information

Brooke Carlson, City Council President
bcarlson@rochestermn.gov Office Phone: 507-328-2983

Patrick Keane, City Council Member, 1st Ward
pkeane@rochestermn.gov Cell Phone: 507-259-2870

Mark Bransford, City Council Member, 2nd Ward
mbransford@rochestermn.gov Cell Phone: 507-254-4430

Nick Campion, City Council Member, 3rd Ward
ncampion@rochestermn.gov Phone: 507-722-0078

Kelly Rae Kirkpatrick, City Council Member, 4th Ward
kkirkpatrick@rochestermn.gov Phone: 507-271-1081

Shaun C. Palmer, City Council Member, 5th Ward
palmerward5@gmail.com - Phone: 507-254-9484

Molly Dennis, City Council Member, 6th Ward
mdennis@rochestermn.gov Phone: 507-269-2916

For addresses, please check the Rochester City Council Page

As always, if you have a comment, complaint, or concern about something I wrote here, please let me know: james.rabe@townsquaremedia.com

Listen to James Rabe and Jessica Williams 6a to 10a on Y-105 FM's Early Morning Show.

Since we're talking about rules and regs, checkout the major laws enacted the year you were born.

LOOK: What major laws were passed the year you were born?

Data for this list was acquired from trusted online sources and news outlets. Read on to discover what major law was passed the year you were born and learn its name, the vote count (where relevant), and its impact and significance.