Drainage District Funding

A common misconception is that the Board of Commissioners allocates a certain amount of general revenue funds each year to pay for drain maintenance.  Instead, all expenses incurred for the construction, repair or maintenance of county drains, including legal and engineering expense, are reimbursed through special assessment.  Each of the drainage districts in the county has its own separate account from which invoices are paid and into which proceeds from assessments are deposited.  The drain commissioner is required to give an account of the fund balance at the end of each fiscal year.  The fiscal year for the drain commissioner is currently January 1 through December 31.

The drainage district for a county drain is a public corporation. It forms a special assessment district that is responsible for all costs on a drain project or routine drain maintenance. When a construction project is undertaken on a County drain, part of the process involves an apportionment of the costs. 

The Drain Commissioner must determine the proportionate share for each parcel of land within the drainage district and for each municipality fully or partially within the drainage district. A Day of Review is set-aside for persons to review the apportionment and the procedures used in its determination. An appeal of the apportionment is possible.

The total apportionment may be divided into annual payments. If money is borrowed on the project, interest must also be added to the annual principal payments. Project and maintenance costs are recovered through special assessments levied on private properties, local governments, county roads, railroads, and state highways. 

Any ongoing assessments can be paid off at anytime by the property owner or the municipality.  You can contact our Assessment Administrator to obtain that information.  Title Companies and Real Estate Firms must request this information by filling out an Assessment Search Request Form and either emailing it or faxing it to the Assessment Administrator.  Please note that there is a charge of $7.50 per drain for these assessment searches that will be invoiced out monthly to the requestor.

2023 Multi-year Assessment Schedule

Assessments Levied in 2023

  1. Drain Office

    Physical Address
    1045 Independence Boulevard
    Charlotte, MI 48813

    Fax: 517-543-6446

  2. Ruthann Clarke

    Deputy Drain Commissioner/Assessment Administrator