The Kalispell City Council will host a hearing during tonight's City Council meeting to discuss a proposed light ordinance. The ordinance would change who is assessed for the maintenance and operation of city lights.
Currently, anyone who owns property within 300 feet of a city-owned light is assessed a fee that they pay as a part of their city taxes. The city wants to change this as electrical costs have gone up in recent years.
"In the last 11 years there's been a substantial increase in electrical costs and cost of maintenance, and so on and so forth. So its been difficult to maintain," said City Attorney Charles Harball.
Under the proposed ordinance, any property owners within the city would be assessed the fee to help pay for the lights. The fee is around a third of a cent per square foot.
To put that into perspective, city officials say an average city lot is 8,632 square feet. That size lot would pay a fee of $25.90.
There will also be a 5-acre cap on vacant properties, but no such break would exist for occupied properties.
"Like I said, we're not going to make everybody happy with it, but Council does need to hear from everybody," said Harball.
The City Council will hear from the town tonight at 7 p.m. and will then decide either to take a vote on the ordinance or hold off until another day.