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Stormwater Service Charge

Featured artist: Shannon Crees
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Stormwater Service Charge

FloodingHow can Council raise the Stormwater Service Charge?

The Stormwater Service Charge was introduced by Council after a period of public exhibition (April–June 2007). The Charge has been applied on rates since 1 July 2007.

The purpose of the Charge is to establish a sustainable funding source aimed solely at improved stormwater management.

The NSW Government amended the Local Government Act in October 2005 to allow councils the option of charging a stormwater management service charge. Amendments to the Local Government (General) Regulation 2005, which came into force in April 2006, provide the requirements for this charge.

What is the Charge for?

Stormwater management is about managing the quantity and quality of stormwater runoff from a catchment with the aims of:

  • minimising impacts on aquatic ecosystems;
  • minimising flooding; and
  • using stormwater as a resource.

Urbanisation has resulted in a significant increase in impervious surfaces, which increases the volume of stormwater flowing into urban waterways. Stormwater flowing from these hard surfaces contributes substantial loads of litter, sediment and chemicals to urban waterways, as well as causing flooding in some areas. In addition, water is now recognised as a valuable resource and opportunities to harvest and use this water are being investigated.

Marrickville Council has developed a reputation as being a leader in this field through experience in sustainability planning, stormwater education, strategic infrastructure management and sustainable urban water management planning.

What is the charge and how much is it raising?

The stormwater charge has been set at $25 per residential lot, $12.50 per strata lot and $25 per 350m2 of commercial / industrial lots (In the first year, councils are permitted to charge a flat charge for business to enable the collection of area data to enable future charges to be determined according to area). This will raise approximately $700,000 is per annum.

This is a conservative estimate; it is considered that possibly up to 50% of the business/industrial properties may have an area in excess of 350 sq metres, which could return a further $50k giving a total of approximately $700k. The rate for business/ industrial properties is based on the higher average impervious area and resultant higher runoff relating to such land uses.

Land UseNumber of PropertiesRate
Residential 17517 $25.00
Strata Units 11052 $12.50
Business / Industry 3082 $25.00

Are there any concessions?

The mandatory concession that applies to ordinary rates, domestic waster, water and sewage charges does not apply to the stormwater charge. However the exemptions that apply to other rates and charges do apply, i.e. Department of Housing properties and non-rateable land are exempt.

The mandatory pension concessions that apply to ordinary rates, domestic waste, water and sewage charges do not apply to the stormwater charge. However the statutory exemptions from rating that apply to ordinary rates and charges do apply i.e. registered charities, Department of Housing properties and non-rateable land etc are exempt from the Stormwater Management Charge. In addition, Council has resolved to provide a 50% subsidy for Pensioner Card/Health Care Card holders for the principal place of residence.

What is being done with the funds raised?

Council already provides stormwater services to manage the stormwater flowing from private property. These services include drainage, drainage advice, community education and monitoring. The charge will enable council to improve these existing services and extend them to stormwater planning, stormwater harvesting and water sensitive urban design systems.

The charge will enable Council to fund a range of programs necessary to achieve more sustainable urban water management i.e. managing water within the subcatchment as far as possible, meet our environmental protection requirements, provide alternate water supplies, and protect property against flood damage.