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2018 Days of Review - Drainage District Boundaries & Apportionment of Benifit





DATE:                                  September 19, 2018

TIME:                                    9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

LOCATION:                         Office of Van Buren County Drain Commissioner

                                                      219 E. Paw Paw St., Suite 303 (3rd floor)

                                                      Paw Paw, Michigan 49079

QUESTIONS:                     (269) 657-8241

Please leave a detailed voicemail. All calls are returned in the order received.

The Day of Review is an opportunity to review the Drainage District boundaries and apportionment of benefit for the Drains listed below with the Drain Commissioner or a staff member. A map of the proposed Drainage District boundary revisions can be found on the Van Buren County Drain Commissioner’s website at: www.vbco.org/days_of_review.asp.

A general description of the lands by section number proposed to be added or deleted from the Drainage Districts as recommended by a licensed professional engineer or surveyor for each of the Drains is as follows: 

The Drain Commissioner, Chief Deputy and/or other staff members will be available to assist individuals throughout the day and make revisions where necessary. There is no need to schedule an appointment for a specific time on the Day of Review. The computation of costs for the Drains listed above will also be available at the Day of Review. Drain assessments are collected in the same manner as property taxes and will appear on your winter tax bill. If drain assessments are being collected for more than one (1) year, you may pay the assessment in full with any interest to date and any time and avoid further interest charges. 

Persons with disabilities needing accommodations for effective participation in the Day of Review should contact the Drain Commissioner’s Office at the number listed above (voice) or through the Michigan Relay Center at 7-1-1(TDD) at least 24 hours in advance of the Day of Review to request mobility, visual, hearing or other assistance.

You may appeal the Drain Commissioner’s decision to revise the district boundary t the Van Buren County Circuit Court within ten (10) days, and you may also appeal the determination of apportionments to the Van Buren County Probate Court within ten (10) days.


 Joe Parman

 Van Buren County Drain Commissioner          



FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS about the Day of Review of  Drainage District Boundaries and Review of Apportionments

What is a Day of Review of District Boundaries?

The Michigan Legislature passed a law in 2013 to allow revisions to historical drainage district boundaries when recommended by a licensed engineer.  Property owners can review changes with the Drain Office staff during the Day of Review.

What is a Drainage District?

A drainage district is the land area that benefits from the drain. The drainage district makes up the watershed that contributes water to the drain. Each property and municipality within the drainage district pays for maintenance and improvement of the drain.

Why are the boundaries being revised?

Revisions are recommended because the historic drainage district boundaries do not accurately reflect the current watershed of the drain.

What is a Day of Review of Apportionments?

A Day of Review of Apportionments provides an opportunity for property owners to review the percent of benefit of the drain assigned to their property. The apportionments of benefit are based on acreage, land use, and other factors. The apportionments determine the assessment amount for each property for costs of construction or maintenance.

Why are the apportionments being revised?

Parcel apportionments are being revised to more accurately reflect the percentage of benefit that each property receives from the drain.  If a parcel is on the outer boundary of a drainage district, it is possible that only a portion of the parcel will be assessed.

Why did I receive a notice?

Notices went out to the following property owners:

Properties being added to the Drainage District.

The properties were not previously in the drainage district, but the engineers determined that the properties are within the drain’s watershed.

Properties being removed from the Drainage District.

The properties were previously in the drainage district, but the engineers determined that the properties are not in the drain’s watershed.

Properties currently in the Drainage District and proposed to remain in the Drainage District.

There is no change in terms of boundaries for these properties.  All property owners subject to an assessment were sent a copy of the notice.

When do I receive my drain assessment?

Drain assessments are included on your Winter Tax bill, and are only levied when costs are incurred for the drain. Assessment amounts vary from year to year.

What is my assessment amount?

Estimated assessment amounts are included in your notice and are also available at the Day of Review.

Do I have to attend the Day of Review?

You are not required to attend the Day of Review.





Health & Cemetery Drain Drainage District 

Vanderlyn Drain Drainage District

Stickney Drain Drainage District

Health & Cemetery and Vanderlyn Drains Land Cover Overview Map

Section 197 - Michigan Drain Code

Frequently Asked Questions - Drain Assessments

Citizens Guide to the Drain Code

Health & Cemetery District map

The Health & Cemetery and Vanderlyn Drains are part of a grant program and using a newer drain apportionment method using GIS land cover and better land management.  Agricultural parcel can incorporate better BMP's to help reduce sediment in county drains and reduce drain assessment cost.

Below is the pilot program example from 2014:

Drain Apportionment Methodology

BMP Certification Program Presentation - 2014 Pilot Program

 Health & Cemetery Map