Stormwater Credit Update
In December 2016, the City Council approved a revision of the City’s system of stormwater credits.

These changes will become effective January 1, 2017. Stormwater credits apply to non single family customers only. Single family stormwater bills will not be affected by these changes.

For information on how stormwater bills are calculated, see this document:  Stormwater Rate Explanation

Bioswale

The City offers credits towards stormwater fees for properties that provide on-site stormwater management systems, such as stormwater ponds and vaults. The City is changing the amount of credit offered and the types of systems that qualify for these credits. In most cases this will impact your monthly stormwater bill. Below are answers to frequently asked questions that we have received about the upcoming changes.

What is the Stormwater Credit System?


The stormwater credit system provides property owners who maintain on-site stormwater systems with credits that reduce their monthly bills to recognize the benefit that their private systems provide to the public system. The credit system recognizes both the quality and quantity of the stormwater that is managed on their property.

Why is the stormwater credit system being updated?


The current stormwater credit system was developed when the City’s stormwater utility was established in the late 1980’s. Since that time, best management practices have evolved and new requirements and design standards from governing agencies have been placed on the utility.

These changes have caused the credit system to become out of alignment with current management practices. The credits have become inequitable, inconsistent and complicated to calculate and explain. Often the credits over or under estimated the benefit of the private systems to the public system.

Which customers are impacted by the update?


The stormwater credit system update impacts only properties that are non-single family residential and have private on-site stormwater systems.

What impact will this update have on monthly bills?


The impacts will vary by property and monthly bills may be adjusted either up or down. Some bills will not be affected.

How will impacted customers be notified of changes?


A general notification of the upcoming update was sent to customers in September to inform them of the update and the effective date of January 1, 2017.

Soon afterward, affected customers received individualized notifications that provided specific information about how their credits and billing amounts will change. Customers will have at least a 60-day period to ask questions, request guidance on how to receive additional credit, or provide documentation for existing systems and request reevaluation of their credits.

Will additional revenue be generated through the implementation of the credit update?


Initial analysis indicates that the implementation of the updated credit system will generate additional revenue for the utility due to the reduction and removal of credits that no longer apply.

What will the process be for deciding how additional revenue will be utilized by the utility?


This issue will be addressed as a part of the City’s budget process that is currently underway.

What will be considered during that process?


The first consideration will be to ensure that non-residential customers are not paying into the stormwater utility more than the cost of the
service they are provided.

Considerations will focus on the addition of new services or programs for non-residential customers including: Low Impact Development (LID) engineering and inspection support, completion of neighborhood plans and soils maps that inform development decisions,  and retrofitting stormwater infrastructure to meet development needs in the Downtown and Overlake urban centers. Other considerations include the reduction of the stormwater fixed rate and the prepayment of outstanding stormwater debt.

Additional Information


Current Credit System
City Council Study Session - April 26, 2016


ContactNick Entinger - 425-556-2813