Monmouth City Council Wants To Hear From You (email)
When it rains, rainwater washes over roofs, streets, parking lots, and then flows into the City's stormwater system conveying rainwater to the nearest creek. When water flows across roofs, streets, and parking lots it picks up pollutants along the way. Monmouth’s stormwater system does not treat stormwater to remove these pollutants before it drains into local creeks. The City’s stormwater system consists of catchbasins, buried pipes, and open ditches used to collect and convey rainwater runoff.
Monmouth City Council has been considering creating a separate Stormwater Utility, much like the City’s water, electric, and sewer utilities. This new stormwater utility would charge Monmouth residents a monthly stormwater fee to cover the cost of providing stormwater services to our citizens and businesses. Services such as the city’s leaf pick-up program, street sweeping, hazardous spill response and pollution prevention education would be paid for using a portion of these fees. Replacing failing stormwater pipes, and preventing localized flooding are other services provided with these dollars.
Currently, Monmouth’s stormwater activities are paid for out of the street fund. The City’s only street fund revenue comes from gas taxes. Gas tax revenue has remained flat for a number of years, while the cost of maintaining both the City’s transportation and stormwater activities steadily increases every year. Monmouth City Council recognizes that trying to pay for both transportation and stormwater activities using gas tax funds is no longer sustainable.
Monmouth City Council is currently considering two potential service levels for this new stormwater utility. The first service level, or basic service level, will provide the same stormwater services that Monmouth residents receive now. It provides services like leaf pick-up, street sweeping, some stormwater system maintenance, and reactive repairs to system failures. This Basic level of service would charge a monthly fee of $11.90 to all residential customers.
The second service level being considered is a medium service level at a monthly fee of $16.64. The additional funds generated by this service level will allow the City to be more proactive in replacing components of the City’s failing stormwater system. It allows the City to be more active in reducing pollution from reaching our local creeks through increased public education, illicit dumping prevention, and construction activity site inspections. These additional services require the addition of one stormwater technician.
There are several benefits of creating a separate stormwater utility.
The dollars collected are dedicated to
stormwater activities providing better accountability to our citizens. It ensures that stormwater rates are spent on
operating and maintaining the stormwater system.
Enhanced stormwater activities reduce the City’s
pollutant impact on local creeks, and positions the City to meet future
regulations related to the quality of stormwater discharged to local creeks.
It frees up a significant amount of the limited
Street Fund gas tax revenue to be invested in better maintaining the City’s
transportation system. It provides more
Street Fund dollars to address sidewalk repairs, and fixing roadways.
These stormwater funds will be used to fix the
most pressing stormwater problems, and enable the City to be more proactive
with maintenance and repair alleviating localized flooding.
Monmouth City Council wants to hear from you (email). Monmouth City Council has been considering the creation of a new Stormwater Utility to pay for stormwater activities in the City of Monmouth for two years. This new utility will charge a stormwater fee, ranging from $11 - $17 per month, that would be included in your monthly utility bill. Monmouth City Council would like to hear from you before they make a final decision on the service level and fee for this new utility.
Possible thoughts to share include -- Are you satisfied with the current level of stormwater services you receive? Do you believe Monmouth should be more proactive in reducing its pollutant impact on our local creeks? Would you support paying a higher stormwater utility fee to allow the City to be more proactive than reactive in maintaining the City’s aging stormwater system infrastructure? What are ways the City can demonstrate accountability for appropriate use of this new stormwater fee?
Below are links to three informational PowerPoints presented to Monmouth City Council helping to describe why the City is pursuing a stormwater utility, how the utility fee is determined, descriptions of 3 different levels of service and what kinds of public outreach has been conducted to inform citizens and business owners of this new potential fee.
Stormwater Utility Formation #1
Stormwater Utility Formation #2
Stormwater Utility Formation #3
This link has answers to FAQs: