If you don't agree with the Board’s decision, you may appeal to either the Wisconsin Department of Revenue or the Circuit Court.
What evidence do I need to present to the Board of Review?
The Board is legally bound to accept the assessor’s assessment as correct unless there is evidence that proves otherwise. Examples of evidence to be considered include a recent sale of your property, recent sale prices of similar properties, or oral testimony from a witness who has made a recent appraisal of your property. Stating that property taxes are too high is not adequate testimony.
When does the Board of Review meet?
By state statute, the first session of the Board of Review must be within the thirty day period beginning on the second Monday in May. If the assessment roll is not completed, the Board will be called and adjourned to a later date.
What is the Board of Review?
The Board of Review is a “quasi-judicial” (court-like) body consisting of five residents of the City, empowered with the following primary duties:
Adjust assessments when they have been proven incorrect by sworn oral testimony;
Correct errors or omissions in the description or computations found on the assessment roll; and
Review the assessment roll for omitted property and double assessments.
After this review, if I still think the assessment is incorrect, what can I do?
The next step is to file an objection with the Board of Review. The property owner must provide the City Clerk with notice of intent to file an objection at least 48 hours before the Board's first scheduled meeting. The Board can waive the 48 hour notice requirement if the property owner shows good cause for failing to meet the requirement or provides evidence of extraordinary circumstances.
Objectors must file their written objection with the City Clerk either prior to or during the first two hours of the Board’s first scheduled meeting. Standard forms are available from the City Clerk’s Office.
What if I don't agree with my assessment?
Speak with the assessor for an explanation of how your assessment was made and what factors were considered in making the assessment.
Where do I register to vote?
City residents may register to vote at the City Clerk’s office in City Hall, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
For information on where to vote please call the Clerk’s office at 726-2719 and they will direct you to the polling place for your ward.
Where do I pay my property taxes?
City of Chippewa Falls residents may pay their tax bills in one payment by January 31st, or in 2 installments on January 31st and July 31st.
All payments through January 31st are collected at the City Treasurer's office located in the City Hall Building, 30 West Central Street, Chippewa Falls.
City Hall office hours are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Second installment payments due July 31st are collected at the Chippewa County Treasurer's office located at the Chippewa County Courthouse, 711 N. Bridge Street, Chippewa Falls. Courthouse hours are 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Taxes remitted by mail are considered paid on the date of the postmark.
When will property tax bills be mailed?
Property tax bills are mailed by the City Treasurer in mid-December after the budgets and tax rates are completed for all taxing jurisdictions.
The bill you receive will include taxes for the City of Chippewa Falls along with levies for Chippewa County, Chippewa Falls Area Schools, Chippewa Valley Technical College and the State of Wisconsin.
Where do I call to reserve a City-wide shared ride taxi?
To reserve a ride call 723-3000.
For additional information on the City’s Shared Ride Taxi Program follow the link to the public transportation page.
How soon must property owners remove snow from their sidewalks?
Property owners have 24 hours after a snowfall to remove the snow from their sidewalks.
How do I dispose of yard waste and brush?
City residents may take yard waste and brush to the drop-off site behind the City Street Department at 5 Riverside Drive from mid April to mid November.
The drop-off site is open on weekdays, excluding Holidays, from 7:00 a.m. – 2:45 p.m. and on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of the month from 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Further information is available by calling the yard waste information line at 720-6971.
Where should I put my recycling container?
Your recyclables must be set out by 5:00 a.m. or the night before your scheduled collection day by the curb or your recyclables will
not be picked up until your next scheduled day. If a holiday occurs
during a given week, collection of recyclables for the remainder of the
week will be picked up one day late. Holidays include New Year’s Day,
Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and
Place cart so the lid opening is facing the street. Be sure there are no obstructions in front of the cart such as other containers, mail boxes, snow banks, etc. Please make sure the cart is free of obstruction at least 3 feet on either side of the cart.
How can I dispose of unwanted medications?
The Chippewa County Community Drug Task Force has a medication box located in the lobby of the Chippewa Falls Police Department. Unwanted medications can be dropped off Monday through Friday 7:30 am to 4:30 pm. Simply place all pill medications in a plastic bag and place the bag in the med box. No pill bottles please.
Where do I get information on the Happy Tails Dog park?
Happy Tails Dog park permits can be purchased at the Chippewa Falls Police Department, Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 4:30 pm
Licenses for dog and cats can be purchased at the Police Department Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 4:30 pm; No holidays.
Every owner of a dog or cat more than 5 months of age must obtain a license.
Proof of vaccination and if animal is neutered or spayed must be shown at time of license purchase. Neutered males and spayed females are $8.00 per year. All others are $13.00 per year.
Cash or check only.
Is it legal to park a semi-trailer on City streets?
City ordinance prohibits the parking of semi-trailers on City streets except when in the process of loading or unloading their contents.
It is illegal for a semi-trailer operator to “drop” a trailer on City streets.
Keys in unattended vehicle ordinance.
No person shall permit a motor vehicle in his/her custody to stand or remain unattended upon any street, alley, or public place in the City without first stopping the engine, locking the ignition, and removing the key, unless all vehicle doors and windows are locked and the vehicle secured.
Whenever any police officer of the City shall find any such motor vehicle, a police officer shall remove the keys and deliver them to the Police Department. Officers will attach a notice to the vehicle that the keys shall be returned to the owner upon presentation of such notice and proof of ownership.
The penalty for violation of this section shall be a parking ticket fine in the amount of $50.
Can I park my car on the street overnight?
Winter ordinance overnight parking on City streets is restricted City-wide between November 15th and March 31st.
City ordinance prohibits the parking of vehicles on City streets for more than 30 minutes between the hours of 2:00 am and 6:00 am
This restriction applies to the downtown business district year round.
How can I obtain a set of my fingerprints for employment, etc.?
The Chippewa Falls Police Department no longer provides fingerprinting services. Residents of Chippewa County (including the entire city of Chippewa Falls) can contact the Chippewa County Sheriff's Office for further details regarding fingerprinting services. (715) 726-7701 or http://www.co.chippewa.wi.us/government/sheriff
How do I pay for citations?
Only Chippewa Falls Police Department parking tickets can be paid at the Chippewa Falls Police Department between the hours of 7:30 am and 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday – No holidays. All parking ticket fine amounts double if not paid within five days.
Cash or check only.
Red parking ticket collection boxes are located in front of the Police Department and City Hall, 30 W. Central Street.
All other citations must be paid at the Chippewa County Courthouse, Clerk of Courts Office, 711 N. Bridge Street, Chippewa Falls.
Who do I call when my fire extinguisher is out of date or doesn't work?
Look in the yellow pages under fire extinguishers.
Do you get cats out of trees?
We strongly suggest you try opening a can of tuna and place it on the ground near the tree. Leave the immediate area and wait for the cat to get down on its own.
How can I find out about what programs the Fire Department offers?
You may visit our Fire Safety Programs page on our website or call 723-5710.
Why do I see firefighters cutting holes in the roof of a building on fire?
This is called venting the roof. There are two basic reasons for this practice. Dangerous gases and acrid smoke accumulate in a burning building. Unlike the movie version of fire, it is impossible for firefighters to see and endure the heat in such an environment. When a vent hole is made in the roof the smoke, heat and gases are allowed to escape. It also reduces the possibility of a back draft explosion.
Why do so many fire apparatus respond to simple incidents?
The Chippewa Falls Fire Department thinks over-cautiously when they respond to citizens in need of help. The firefighters are prepared to deal with the worst case scenario. A fire requires a number of people to complete the assigned tasks. Firefighting teams are assigned certain responsibilities such as rescue, extinguishment, ventilation, water supply and accountability. Discovering that more units are needed once we arrive on the scene is often too late. We have learned from experience that it is better to have too much help than not enough.
Why do fire trucks respond to emergency medical calls?
Our primary mission is to provide customer satisfaction and patient care. Fire Department units are dispatched according to information received by the 911 operator. Firefighters are all trained as EMTs and while our ambulances are staffed with Advanced Life Support Intermediate-Enhanced-EMT's, there are certain scenarios that require more personnel. The fire engine may often be in close proximity to an emergency and can begin life saving techniques such as CPR and defibrillation prior to an ambulance arrival.
Where can I get information about CPR courses?
CPR classes may be arranged by contacting the Red Cross at 723-4655.
Is counseling available if my child is setting fires?
Yes. The Fire Department has a Juvenile Fire Setters program that may be able to help. Contact the Fire Department by calling 723-5710.
Where can I go to get my blood pressure checked?
Either fire station between the hours of 8:00 am. and 5:00 pm.
I received a bill for ambulance service. How do I pay my bill?
If you have any questions about your bill, contact the Fire Department secretary at
723-5710 and she will be glad to help you.
What do I do if my detector's alarm sounds?
Never ignore the alarm, even if you do not smell smoke! Call 911 and the dispatcher will notify the Fire Department and advise you what to do.
Am I required to have smoke detectors installed in my home?
If you own your home and it was built after 1986, the Wisconsin Unified Building code requires that a smoke detector be installed and hard wired to your house electrical system. If your home was built before 1986, it is recommended that you consider installing smoke detectors that are hard wired or battery operated.
If you rent, smoke detectors are required to be installed and maintained by your landlord.
CO detectors, while not required, are recommended if you have a heating system or appliances that use wood, oil or gas for fuel.
Do I need a permit to burn in the city of Chippewa Falls?
Yes. The Fire inspector or his designee may issue a permit after an on site inspection for the burning of wood or branches. (Chippewa Falls Municipal Code section 9-31)Burning Regulations
Special assessments are one of the permitted statutory forms of charges made by the City against property to pay for improvements that serve and benefit the respective properties. This is a method that the City uses to offset the cost of constructing street and utilities improvements for those that directly benefit from the completed or planned improvements.
What improvements are special assessments levied for?
The City normally levies special assessments for the new construction and reconstruction of sanitary sewers, water mains, sewer and water connections, curb and gutter, sidewalks, driveway aprons, street surfacing and alley paving. New construction of road grading, gravel, street paving, and in some conditions storm sewer may be assessed. Some of the items above are assessed on a guaranteed life basis and if they have to be replaced within that useful life, credit is given to the benefited property. In isolated cases, other costs may be assessed for if a specific benefit is derived by the property.
Who determines the amount assessed for each item?
The assessment rates are adjusted annually in accordance with the current costs to construct each item and are recommended to the Common Council by the Board of Public Works based on the previous year’s construction costs or current year bid prices. Similar assessments are used throughout the City; rates are consistent and do not vary from street to street or in accordance with the size of sewer and water mains. The assessment rates are based on the minimum sewer and water sizes necessary for residential service and construction on an average width residential street. The increased costs of larger pipes and wider streets are paid from the general or utility fund.
How are assessable improvements projects initiated and authorized?
One of the duties of the Engineering Department’s Staff is to examine the various needs of the City of Chippewa Falls and make recommendations to the Board of Public Works and Common Council, but projects can be initiated by a number of methods including requests from property owners; sewer, water main, and storm sewer infrastructure needs; petitions from property owner;, as well as the necessity to maintain and improve older sections of infrastructure within the City. The Mayor and City Council review these recommendations and, if the projects appear reasonable, include them in the budget process. If the projects are included within the budget, a preliminary resolution is adopted and sent to all property owners affected by the improvements. A public hearing is then scheduled in which all property owners are invited to attend and the Council’s final authorization of a project is made after the public hearing has been held.
How much will my special assessment be?
The amount a property is special assessed is contingent on the size of the property, type of improvements that are being completed and assessment history of the property. The owners of all properties involved in a special assessment project will be notified of the types and amounts prior to the public hearing and the information is also available in the City Engineer’s office. Certain credits are made on corner lots and for unique utility and street improvements.
How do I pay my special assessments?
A bill will be mailed to the property owner after the improvements have been completed. The property owner has two methods in which to pay for the special assessments.
The first method is for the owner to pay the project assessments in full no later than February 28th of the year following construction. By doing so, the owner will avoid any interest charges.
The second payment method is to have them added to the property tax in five (5) or ten (10) equal annual principal installments, depending on the amount assessed. In most cases, the first installment will appear on the tax statement in December of the year following construction. An interest rate of is applied to the unpaid balances at the end of each year. The interest rate is based on the bond rate paid by the City. Assessments may be paid in full at any time.
What if I can’t afford the assessments?
In cases where special assessments may cause a financial hardship the City may forgive or defer collection of the assessments. The property owner will need to send a letter to the City Clerk requesting the deferment and then appear at a confidential meeting with the City Finance Committee and provide evidence of the hardship case.
How can I learn more about the project
For further information on this, or any other City Street and Utility Improvement Projects please contact the Engineering Department at (715) 726-2736, or stop at the office which is located on the second floor of City Hall, 30 West Central Street.
My street is in poor condition, what is the process for getting it reconstructed?
There are many ways streets are included in the annual budget for reconstruction. They range from a recommendation from the Engineering Department, citizen petitions, citizen requests and special other factors that may contribute to the need for reconstruction. If you are interested in getting a petition for street construction stop by the Engineering Office at 2nd Floor, City Hall, 30 West Central Street for details.
I am replacing or constructing a new driveway approach in the public right-of-way. What do I need for permits?
To replace a driveway approach in the public right-of-way, you will need a driveway permit which can be obtained from the Chippewa Falls Engineering Department. Before a driveway permit can be issued, engineering staff verifies the driveway will lead to a legal parking area, the planned opening at the curb and gutter does not exceed 35 feet from edge to edge and check for any other concerns that the driveway may cause. The permits can only be issued to a General Contractor or the person or organization that is performing the work.
Who is responsible for installing and maintaining sidewalks?
The property owner is responsible for 100% of the cost to install and maintain sidewalks.
What happens if the property owner doesn’t maintain the sidewalk?
If the property owner fails to maintain the sidewalk, the City may issue a Sidewalk Condemnation Order. The property owner would then have 20 days to correct the deficient sidewalk. If after 20 days the sidewalk hasn’t been repaired, the City would cause the work to be done and bill the property owner.
Why did I receive a Sidewalk Order and Notice?
The City issues sidewalk replacement orders when the sidewalk is deemed to be unsafe. The criteria for issuing sidewalk orders, in areas other than downtown, include but are not limited to: 1” joint displacement, wide cracks and surface spalling.
Can a property owner install his own sidewalk?
Property owners can install their own sidewalk as long as they comply with the City’s specifications. A copy of the specifications can be picked up at the City Engineer’s office.
Does the City require property owners/contractors to obtain a permit prior to constructing a sidewalk?
Property owners/contractors are required to get a Sidewalk Permit when the sidewalk across the entire frontage is replaced or when sidewalk is installed for the first time.
Does the City set sidewalk grades?
The City sets sidewalk line and grade. The property owner/contractor should contact the Department at least 3 days prior to construction. There is no fee for grade requests.
What happens if I do not pay the assessments?
Special assessments are similar to real estate taxes in respect that both become a lien against the property involved. If the assessments are not paid, the City may, after due process, sell the property at public sale in order to collect the amount due.
If the City repairs my sidewalk, how will I be billed?
After the City’s Contractor has completed the sidewalk repair, the City will send the property owner a bill for the repairs which is due upon receipt. If the bill is not paid on or before February 28th of the year following construction, the bill added to the property tax in five (5) or ten (10) equal annual principal installments, depending on the amount assessed. In most cases, the first installment will appear on the tax statement in December of the year following construction. An interest rate of is applied to the unpaid balances at the end of each year. The interest rate is based on the bond rate paid by the City. Assessments may be paid in full at any time.