Special Improvement Districts (SID)
Special Improvement Districts (SIDs) serve two primary functions:
- Creation of some form of infrastructure, such as sewer lines or roads
- Maintenance of some facility or service the City provides, such as street lighting
SIDs are created by action of the City Council. First, a resolution of intent is passed and advertised in the newspaper. This notifies the people who will be effected by the SID. Citizens have the opportunity to protest and make public comments. If the protest hasn't been sufficient to cancel the project, a final resolution is passed.
For more information regarding SIDs, please call (406) 552-6111.
The costs from the creation or maintenance of the infrastructure in the district are distributed across the properties that benefit. State law allows the distribution on the basis of the area of each parcel in the district, the assessed value of each parcel, the number of parcels, the front footage of each parcel bordering a street, or a combination of these.
Selling bonds that are paid off over a period of up to 20 years pays for the costs of the improvements or maintenance. The city in-turn assesses the parcels in the district to generate the money needed to pay off the bonds. The interest rate charged by the city is the average interest rate payable on the outstanding bonds, plus up to 1% to cover the administration costs.
The assessment appears on the property owner's yearly property tax bill, which is mailed in October. The first half of the assessment is due by November 30, and the second half of the assessment is due by May 31, to avoid penalty. Residents who want to pay off their assessment may contact the City Finance Office at (406) 552-6111 or (406) 552-6119.
Having your parcel number is helpful, but not essential.