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Perham offers incentive to new construction homeowners

In an attempt to keep lawns looking green and healthy, the City of Perham is offering new homeowners one year of free water. Available to buyers of any new construction residential housing unit, the incentive will provide free water usage; the wa...

In an attempt to keep lawns looking green and healthy, the City of Perham is offering new homeowners one year of free water.

Available to buyers of any new construction residential housing unit, the incentive will provide free water usage; the water base rate will remain on the utility bill.

"We feel this would encourage the new homeowner to establish a nice looking lawn with less cost to them," wrote city Finance Officer Patti Stokke in a letter to the city council.

The incentive, effective as of April 10, times out with the approach of spring and the beginning of new construction.

The average cost per house is estimated to be less than $200 per year, according to Stokke: "We don't feel this will be a significant loss of revenue to the water fund."

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In a meeting of the City Council last week, City Manager Kelcey Klemm said Perham has offered similar incentives before, including a utility billing credit that "has since gone away."

This program, he said, is intended for HRA homes, Habitat for Humanity homes, Youth Build homes, "or any home for that matter."

"The idea is to give them that free water so they can water their lawns," he said, "It will help beautify neighborhoods."

The incentive is offered for 12 months, or until the homeowner sells the property - whichever comes first.

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