Friends encourages everyone in Harrisonburg to learn more about the proposed Stormwater Utility Fee by attending the public input session on December 2nd, 5:30 to 7:30, at Spotswood Elementary School. Learn more here. The public can provide comments on the ordinance until December 20th. We expect City Council will formally consider this ordinance in the first few months of 2015. Once implemented, fees will be assessed on all properties in July.
Friends of the North Fork supports this approach to paying for new stormwater treatment technologies that will remove pollutants and help take care of urban runoff problems. Farmers and wastewater treatment plants have spent millions as they work hard to reduce their impacts on our rivers for decades. Now homeowners, business owners and others can also shoulder their share of the responsibility and the expense.
Polluted runoff from streets and parking areas is growing as our communities continue to develop land and disrupt the natural flow of stormwater. A mix of chemicals from vehicles and nutrients from poorly managed lawns washes into Blacks Run in Harrisonburg which then flows into the North River and ultimately, the Shenandoah River. Harrisonburg plans to draw drinking water out of the river below Blacks Run. The cleaner our runoff, the clean our drinking water will be before we pay to treat it.
Come to the information session on December 2nd and learn how Harrisonburg plans to address these impacts and what the new fee will mean for everyone who owns property in the City.
The fee will charge property owners based on the amount of impervious surface they have–the roofs, driveways, patios and other surfaces where water runs off. Credits will be available for certain practices that help slow and cleanse stormwater. Everyone is assessed the same based on the size of their contribution to the problem. Come to the meetings and find out exactly how much your fee will be for your home, your business, or your church.