Water bills to increase 100%
On September 5th, City Council will vote on a proposal from the Bureau of Environmental Services to begin direct billing everyone in the PEN2 drainage districts for stormwater fees. It is important that City Council hears what you think, and as soon as possible so they are aware of your opinion prior to the vote on Sept 5th.
For residential properties this proposal amounts to approximately an additional $15 month fee on your water bill. Since we are billed quarterly, you will see a $45 increase in your quarterly water bill, or $180/year. This is in addition to what you pay to Multnomah County Drainage District (MCDD) on your property taxes. Businesses will see 100-200% increases.
It is important you communicate to City Council members what you think of this proposal. You can call, email any or all City commissioners, or attend the City Council meeting on Sept 5th at 3pm. Contact information is below, and on our website: www.ecnapdx.com
We have had several meetings, sent special notices. and written newsletter articles on this topic. There is background information posted on our website: www.ecnapdx.com.
These discussions have resulted in the following testimony from the neighborhood:
- Public involvement and information on this proposal was poor, with short notice of meetings, confusing mailings (from BES) and as a result neighbors are not aware of the huge impacts this fee proposal will have.
- We think City Council should extend the current Inter-Governmental Agreement with MCDD until all the data is collected regarding the cost to provide services for the handling of stormwater, and those rates are agreed upon by the City and MCDD. MCDD has a study due to be completed by February 2013. Begin this fee July 2013 with all the pertinent data in place.
- In order to provide true equity in the rate charges, drainage district landowners should be given credit for the fees we pay through our property taxes that provide management and protection of the Marine Dr levee. These services are critical for key businesses along the levee (airport, PIR, Delta Park, Expo Center). Other city ratepayers are not currently paying for these costs.
- The fees should be delayed until July 2013, allowing users to budget for it. Start the first year at 25% and increase it over a four year period.
It is your choice to have your voice be heard on this issue.
Take the time to call or email City Council members, especially Dan Saltzman, as he is the commissioner in charge of the Bureau of Environmental Services.
“Unless we stand for something we will fall for anything”
Contact info for City Council members:
Chief of Staff, Brendan Finn
Chief of Staff, Jennifer Yocum
Chief of Staff, Hannah Kuhn
Chief of Staff, Aaron Johnson
Chief of Staff, Tom Bizeau