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WATERLOO — A final decision on boosting the city’s storm water fees is up for consideration this week.

Waterloo City Council members are slated Monday to approve the third and final reading of an ordinance hiking the fee by 45 percent July 1 and setting up future annual increases for the next five years.

The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers on the second floor of City Hall.

Mayor Quentin Hart and City Engineer Jamie Knutson said additional revenue is necessary for the city to tackle an estimated $30 million list of large drainage projects to alleviate flooding during periods of heavy rain.

The proposal has faced blowback from some property owners who contend they should be exempt from the charges if the streets near their homes lack storm sewers.

The storm sewer fee was first adopted in Waterloo in 2010 to help provide money to address new state and federal storm water requirements; relieve pressure on other city revenue streams by shifting street cleaning expenses to the storm water fund; and have a small pot of money for localized drainage improvements.

Residential property owners currently pay $2.75 per month through the storm water fee, which is among the lowest in the state among large municipalities. The ordinance would boost that fee to $4 monthly July 1, while adding 25 cent to the monthly fee in each of the following five years.

Industrial, commercial and institutional properties pay the $2.75 monthly base fee but also pay another $2.75 for every 5,000 square feet of impervious surface area on their sites. Both of those fees would jump to $4 per month under the proposed ordinance.

The first reading of the storm water free increase passed unanimously. Councilman Steve Schmitt voted against the second reading, which passed on a 6-1 vote.

Other scheduled council business includes:

  • The second reading of ordinances which would legalize the use of consumer fireworks on July 3-5 but put additional zoning restrictions on where they could be sold.
  • A 3:55 p.m. work session to hear budget presentations from the Waterloo Public Library and Waterloo Center for the Arts.

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Waterloo City Reporter

Waterloo city reporter for the Courier

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