Franchise Fee Refund Program

The Northfield City Council approved utility franchise fees as an alternative revenue source from special property tax assessments primarily for street improvement projects, and secondarily for ancillary improvements (i.e. trail gaps, sidewalk gaps and climate actions and initiatives as outlined in the strategic plan).

Xcel Energy gas and electric franchise fees went into effect in March 2021.

This Franchise Fee Refund program was established to allow eligible properties that are currently paying or have paid a street assessment during the years 2010 through 2020 to apply for a refund to cover the cost of the franchise fee that has been added to their gas and electric bill through Xcel Energy. This program is not a refund for the special street assessment itself but rather the franchise fee that has been added to a property's gas and electric bills.

Eligible properties will have an opportunity to apply for the refund and be refunded for all 12 months of the calendar year. Except for 2021, where properties will only be refunded from March through December.

How much will I be refunded?

Eligible properties will have an opportunity to apply for the refund and be refunded for the franchise fee amount for all 12 months of the calendar year.

Exceptions

  • The first year (2021), properties will only be refunded from March through December.
  • You will not receive a full refund for the franchise fee amount if your refund exceeds your initial assessment amount. (See example below).

Electric

ClassAmount per premise per month
Residential$3.25
Small commercial and industrial: non-demand$4.00
Small commercial and industrial: demand$32.50
Large commercial and industrial$999.00
Public street lighting$0.00
Municipal pumping demand$0.00
Municipal pumping non-demand$0.00

Gas

ClassAmount per premise per month
Residential$2.25
Commercial firm: non-demand$12.50
Commercial firm: demand$485.00
Small interruptible$99.50
Medium and large interruptible$1,880.00
Firm transportation$0.00
Interruptible transportation$0.00


How do I know if my property is eligible for the refund program?

A property is eligible for the Franchise Fee Refund Program if the applicant is the original owner of the property when a street assessment was applied to the property, and if that street assessment was applied within the last 10 years. Properties are eligible if the street assessment is still currently being paid off or even if it was paid in full up front. The property will no longer be eligible if the street assessment has passed the ten year mark.

  • 2010 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2021
  • 2011 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2022
  • 2012 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2023
  • 2013 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2024
  • 2014 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2025
  • 2015 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2026
  • 2016 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2027
  • 2017 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2028
  • 2018 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2029
  • 2019 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2030
  • 2020 Street Assessment properties will be eligible through 2031

Properties are only eligible for a refund up to the amount of their original assessment.

Example

A residential property was assessed $300 in 2019. Their property is eligible to apply for a refund from the years 2021 to 2030. However their refund amount cannot exceed the original assessment rate. The applicant applies for a refund ($3.25 a month for electric and $2.25 a month for gas) for the next five years totaling $330 ($66 a year). That fifth year they apply for the refund they will only be refunded $36 because they hit their original assessment amount of $300 dollars.

You may also contact the Engineering Department to help determine if your property is eligible and when your eligibility will be expiring.

Annual communication

A letter will be sent out in the fall every year to eligible properties that will include information about the Franchise Fee Refund Program and a copy of the Refund Program Form.

More information

Franchise Fee Refund Program FAQ's

Apply for the refund

Franchise Fee Refund Program Form