Grand Rapids City Councils past and present have always placed a high priority on the surrounding lakes, rivers, creeks and wetlands within the City limits. To adequately fund the growing demand and increasing cost related to stormwater drainage, water quality management and wetland protection, the City Council passed a Stormwater Utility Ordinance: #04-08-10 (Ordinance Chapter 24 Section 1.0 – 1.6) at the August 9th, 2004, City Council Meeting. For more information on storm water best management practices click here.
STORMWATER UTILITY GOALS
1. To Fund the Stormwater infrastructure improvements and maintenance as outlined in the Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) and eliminate assessments on stormwater reconstruction projects.
Environmental Protection Agency requirements are as follows:
National Pollution Discharge Elimination System Phase II (NPDES, Phase II)
Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP)
City’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4) as outlined in the City’s Stormwater Permit
HOW MUCH DOES THIS COST?
As of January 1, 2013, City residents and businesses will be charged a fee for storm sewer management. The fee schedule approved by the City Council is as follows:
Single Family $6.00 per month
Multi-Family $21.93 per acre per month
Commercial $33.59 per acre per month
Industrial $33.59 per acre per month
Institutional $29.79 per acre per month
Agricultural – Vacant EXEMPT
Road Right-of-Way EXEMPT
Open Water EXEMPT
HOW DOES THE CITY BILL FOR STORMWATER?
The City will be utilizing the services of Public Utilities for billing. For the City Residents in the Public Utilities Service Area, they will notice an additional line item on their PUC bill for Stormwater Utility fees. The City Residents in the Lake Country Power Service Area, will receive a separate bill from PUC for Stormwater Utility fees only.
Service fees which have been used to finance sanitary sewer and water systems will now be applied to the Stormwater Management.
STORMWATER UTILITY ADVANTAGES
Charges are based on runoff rather than property value as is the case with general taxes.
All developed property types pay, including tax exempt.
Self financing – does not compete with other governmental agencies for general revenues.
Provides consistent funding and is easily projected.
Revenues are kept in separate, dedicated funds.
Can be used for debt services on revenue bonds.
Simple and Flexible:
Similar to water and sewer charges.
Adaptable to existing billing systems.
Best management practice credits.
Utilities are in use around the State of Minnesota.
Certain segments of storm water management cost have been shifted from property taxes to the utility.
The operation of the Stormwater Utility will be managed jointly by the City’s Engineering and Public Works Departments.
The City Engineer will oversee the administrative management of the rate changes, new construction, commercial and industrial discharge method of appeal for credits and long-range planning. The Public Works Director will oversee the development of best practices and maintain public education, participation and involvement.
For further information please contact Jeff Davies, Public Works Director at 218-326-7480, or Steve Anderson, Stormwater Specialist at 218-326-7627.
For information about credits which may be granted to Commercial, Industrial or Multi-Family (apartments/condos) please contact Matt Wegwerth, City Engineer at 218-326-7625.