WDAY: The News Leader

Published June 07, 2011, 10:33 AM

Oxbow requests decrease in property taxes

Oxbow, ND (WDAY TV) - A lot of people living in Oxbow feel slighted by the locally-preferred diversion plan. A diversion could result in a complete buyout of the community. They don't think their properties have value anymore, and are now requesting a drastic decrease in property taxes.

A retired Myron Strand trades his tee-times between Arizona and North Dakota as the seasons change, but eventually he wants to sell his Oxbow home. Now he doesn't know if he can.

Myron Strand - Lived in Oxbow Since 1998: “The value of the house now if I was to put it on the market would be a nickel. Nobody would give me a dime for this place right now with the events that are going to be.”

At a Cass County Board of Equalization meeting last night, Oxbow residents requested an 80-percent decrease in their Property taxes.

Darrel Vanyo – Cass County Commissioner: “I understand it, but at the same time it's kind of shooting themselves or the Kindred school district in the foot.”

A 300-thousand dollar home in Oxbow is going to pay just over 43-hundred dollars a year in property taxes. The community of Oxbow currently accounts for 9.5-percent of the Kindred School Districts valuation. We spoke with the Kindred superintendent who did not have any comment at this time.

For now, residents are left wanting at least some change.

Paul Groder - Lived in Oxbow Since 1989: “The school district's gotta be protected too, but somebody's gotta make that decision, not me.”

The Oxbow City Auditor also refused to go on camera, but said if the tax decrease does happen, the city would do everything in its power to protect the Kindred School District. The Cass County Board of Equalization will decide whether or not to grant the tax reduction at its next meeting on June 20th.