First Stormwater Utility Bill Issued This Month

This month, property owners will receive the first annual stormwater utility bill. In the past, all stormwater charges were included within property taxes, determined by the assessed property value. The new stormwater utility is a user-pay system, connecting the impact a property has on the stormwater system directly to the bill.

Charges will now be based on each property‚Äôs characteristics, including the area of hard surfaces such as a roof and driveway, property use and length of street frontage. These measurements were determined using geographic information systems (GIS) technology, aerial photography and building plans.

Stormwater is rain that lands on hard surfaces and then flows into drains and pipes. The stormwater system helps to manage the rain and runoff in Victoria, reducing flooding by moving excess stormwater away from properties. It also separates some of the oil, metals, sand and soil that would otherwise flow into our waterways and ocean.

The new billing method allows the City to offer incentives for managing rainwater more sustainably, through the Rainwater Rewards program. Property owners who are considering improvements can introduce methods such as rain gardens, cisterns, green roofs, permeable paving and other approved rainwater management methods for on-going credits to reduce their bill.

The stormwater utility does not generate new revenue for the City. The City's stormwater budget remains the same in moving from property taxes to a utility system.

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