(a)   Civil fines subject to assessment. In accordance with § 12.15, subd. 2 of the City Charter, unpaid civil fines imposed for property-related violations may be assessed against:
      (1)   Property which was the subject matter or related to the subject matter of the civil fines; or
      (2)   Property which was the location of an activity, proposed use, delivery of city service or other circumstance which resulted in the civil fine.
   (b)   Prior voluntary payment. Prior to any assessment for unpaid fines, the City Manager or the Manager’s designate shall seek voluntary payment of the fines by notifying the owner of the property in writing of the fine imposed.
   (c)   Assessment procedure. On or before October 1 of each year, the unpaid civil fine and late fees, including the administrative charge due under subsection (d) below, together with interest thereon at the maximum lawful rate permitted under M.S. Chapter 429, as it may be amended from time to time, to be charged against said lot or parcel of land, together with a description of the premises and the name of the supposed owner, shall be certified to the County Auditor and shall be collected in the same manner as taxes or special assessments against the premises. The charge shall be a perpetual lien on the premises until paid. Prior to the certification to the County Auditor, the owner shall be given written notice of the proposed assessment and have the right to a hearing before an independent hearing officer to determine the following:
      (1)   Whether the unpaid civil fine is of the type of unpaid special charge that qualifies for special assessment pursuant to M.S. § 429.101, as it may be amended from time to time, or § 12.15 of the City Charter;
      (2)   Whether the amount to be assessed is correct;
      (3)   Whether the property was correctly identified;
      (4)   Whether the owner of the property was correctly identified; and
      (5)   Whether the special assessment procedure set forth in M.S. Chapter 429, as it may be amended from time to time, was properly followed by the city.
      Thereafter, the independent hearing officer shall make a report that includes recommendations to the City Council as to whether the unpaid civil fine should be collected as a special assessment against the real property. Subsequently the property owner shall be provided an opportunity to be heard before the City Council.
   (d)   Administrative assessment charge. The administrative assessment charge is set forth in City Code Appendix A.
(Ord. 99-32, passed 10-4-1999; Ord. 2007-36, passed 10-22-2007; Ord. 2011-19, passed 8-15-2011; Ord. 2016-24, passed 10-24-2016; Ord. 2019-26, passed 5-22-2019; Ord. 2020-40, passed 11-23-2020)