Flood program continues

The City of Minot has begun a second round of property acquisitions in the footprint of a proposed flood protection project.

The Minot City Council’s Finance and Improvements Committee is recommending the council adopt a list of properties in the footprint to enable the city to continue sending acquisition letters to property owners as funding becomes available.

Cindy Hemphill, city finance director, told the committee that 113 letters have been sent in the second phase of acquistions. In response, the city has heard from 90 property owners interested in proceeding with appraisals. Only six declined a buyout, and the remainder have not responded.

Hemphill said if people decline a buyout, the city will move on to send letters to other property owners as long as money is available. The North Dakota State Water Commission has been providing funding at 75 percent of the acquisition cost.

About 400 properties are on the list of properties in the footprint, including those in the 27th Street and Maple Street diversions as well as properties near the river.

The committee also is recommending an award of bid to DSW Homes for rehabilitating or reconstructing rental properties damaged by the 2011 flood. The city established the Small Rental Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Program using Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery dollars.

Properties of one to four units are eligible for the program. Property owners would receive forgivable loans in exchange for leasing their properties to low- to moderate-income households at affordable rates.