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December 20, 2017
Stormwater Utility Fee takes effect in January 2018
SACHSE (December 20, 2017) While the City of Sachse has steadfastly complied with state and federally mandated requirements for maintaining waterways free of pollution, the municipality has been one of only two North Texas cities that has done so without a stormwater utility fee structure.
“We have been able to provide the required services without additional fees, but risings costs and additional requirements have made that unsustainable,” says Greg Peters, Sachse’s Public Works and Engineering Director. “The City Council has authorized the Stormwater Utility Fee to underwrite the costs associated with this critical program.”
The Council adopted the Stormwater Utility Fee in order to meet state-mandated regulations specifically related to the discharge of stormwater into area waterways. The monthly fees, which will be implemented in January, will be used exclusively to cover the costs of programs, personnel, equipment and other expenses required to comply with Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) rules and regulations related to stormwater management.
Known as a General Permit, the TCEQ rules were first developed in 2007 and were subsequently amended and expanded in what is known as the December 2013 General Permit. A General Permit is required for all municipalities, cities, towns, and counties in the state to ensure compliance with stormwater management regulations.
The general purpose of the regulations is to reduce stormwater pollution, thereby maintaining clean lakes, streams, rivers, creeks and other waterways.
Among the requirements are operating and maintaining the City’s stormwater infrastructure, investigating flooding problems, removal and clearing of storm debris, vegetation management, pipe and channel repair, erosion protection, inspection and compliance, and improving stormwater quality within the community.
The new Stormwater Utility Fee, which applies to all Sachse property owners, was authorized by the Texas Legislature in 1987. However, through prudent use of funding, Sachse was able, until now, to comply with these regulations without implementing a dedicated fee.
“Between January and February, Sachse residents and business will see a stormwater utility charge which will appear on the utility bill,” said Peters. “The fee will remain at that level for at least five years.”
The Stormwater Utility Fee is based on the amount of impervious area on each property, including rooftops, driveways, patios, sidewalks or any other hard surfaces that do not allow stormwater to infiltrate into the ground.
For the average Sachse residence, a monthly charge of $1.66 will be applied, unless the impervious area is over 4,300 sq. ft. Businesses, commercial or industrial locations with more than 4,300 sq. ft. of impervious area will be charged according to the appropriate surface area.
Information regarding incentives and credits is available at www.cityofsachse.com/.