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§19-21-15. Exceptions to appraisers' report; action of court thereon; review of assessments.

The drainage district, or any owner of land or other property in such district, may file exception to such report, or to any assessment for either benefits or damages, within ten days after the last day of publication of the notice provided for in the preceding section. All exceptions shall be heard by the court and determined in a summary manner so as to carry out liberally the purposes and needs of the district, and if it appears to the satisfaction of the court, after having heard and determined all of such exceptions, that the estimated cost of constructing the improvement contemplated in "the plan for reclamation" is less than the benefits assessed against the land and other property in such district, then the court shall approve and confirm such appraisers' report so modified and amended. The court shall adjudge and apportion the costs incurred by the exceptions filed and shall condemn any land or other property, within or without the boundary lines of the district, that is shown by the report of the appraisers to be needed for rights-of- way, holding basins and other works, or that may be needed for material to be used in constructing such works, following, as nearly as possible, the procedure that is now provided by law for the appropriation of land and other property taken for telegraph, telephone and railroad rights-of-way. The clerk of such circuit court shall transmit a certified copy of the court's decree and a copy of the appraisers' report, as confirmed or amended by the court, to the secretary of the board of supervisors of the district, who shall make and transmit a certified copy of such decree and that part of the report affecting land in each county to the clerk of the county court of each county having lands in the district, or affected by such report, where the same shall become a permanent record. If, after determining the objections made to the appraisers' report, the court shall find that the estimated cost of works and improvements as approved by the board of appraisers, or as amended by the court, exceeds the estimated benefits, the court shall then render its decree declaring the district to be dissolved as soon as all costs incurred, which shall include court costs and all obligations and expenses incurred in behalf of the district by the board of supervisors shall have been paid; and if the uniform tax levied under the provisions of section eleven of this article be found insufficient to pay all such costs, the board of supervisors shall make such additional uniform tax levies as will be necessary to pay such deficiency.

Any owner of real property within the district who conceives himself to be aggrieved by the assessment of benefits or damages, or who deems that the assessment of any land in the district is inadequate, shall present his complaint to the circuit court at the first regular, adjourned, or special session held more than ten days after the last publication of such notice, and such court shall consider the same and enter its findings thereon either confirming such assessment or increasing or diminishing the same, and its findings shall then have the force and effect of a judgment from which an appeal may be taken within twenty days, either by the property owners or by the supervisors of the district.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2017 Regular Session
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