Mississauga Council reviewed plans for bringing a new City stormwater charge into effect at today's General Committee meeting. The charge will help reduce the risk of flooding, protect water quality and will appear on the Region of Peel water bill starting in January 2016.
"Having a dedicated and fair stormwater charge is the right thing to do," said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. "It will fund the City's stormwater program and minimize risks to people, properties and the environment." She added: "Mississauga is a growing city with aging infrastructure. Staff has done the research and spoken to staff in other municipalities that have similar programs. We are looking at the best solution for Mississauga."
City Manager and CAO Janice Baker explained: "Stormwater management is a big ticket item for a large urban city the size of Mississauga. The City owns $1.8 billion in stormwater infrastructure that needs to be properly maintained. With heavier rainfalls, more people living here and more businesses operating here, the amount of stormwater running off hard surfaces such as roofs and parking lots is increasing."
Baker added the charge is fair because it's based on the amount of hard surface on a property – the less hard surface, the less water runoff that goes into our system, the less the property owner will pay. "Today, there is more stormwater entering our system than ever before and it's causing costly wear and tear on our already aging infrastructure," said Baker. "Dedicated funding is the responsible way to maintain our system today; it also means that we will have funds to draw on if emergency repairs are needed."
Approval of the policies related to the charge is set for the May 27 Council meeting agenda.
What the new charge means to property owners
Different types of properties have different amounts of stormwater runoff. Property owners will be charged based on the amount of hard surface area on their properties. According to the Corporate Report.
• Residential properties will be grouped into one of five tiers by size – from extra-small to extra-large. A number of billing units will apply to the tier - for example, homes in the medium tier will be assigned one billing unit. Homes will be put into a tier based on the amount of rooftop area which is based on aerial imagery; this imagery will be updated annually.
• Multi-residential and non-residential property owners (such as condominiums, apartments and businesses) will be assigned one billing unit for every 267 square metres of hard surface on their property.
• The 2016 Stormwater Rate will be set at $100 per billing unit. Each year, Council will set the stormwater rate as part of the City's budget process. In 2016, residential property owners will pay $50 to $170 depending on their tier.
• The majority of residential property owners will pay $100 or less.
• A credit program will be available for multi-residential and non-residential properties.
• Property owners can visit the City's website to learn more about managing stormwater on their property and the programs available to them in Mississauga.
To learn more about the charge and how it will work, visit www.stormwatercharge.ca
Stormwater Financing Study
• In 2012, the City did a study with input from the public to find the best solution for Mississauga.
• The study found a stormwater charge to be a fair and dedicated source of funding that is needed to manage stormwater now and in the future.
• Council approved in principle the use of a charge on December 12, 2012.
• Staff reported back on the program with a billing method and the charge was approved December 11, 2013.