City considers raising stormwater fee
The city of Hillsboro is asking for the public's input on how to repair its aging stormwater pipes throughout the city.
Hillsboro's century-old stormwater system collects rain, snow and other street-level water, which it treats and then releases back into the Tualatin River. The pipes help prevent local flooding during heavy rainstorms, but many are in need of repairs, and the city's current plans for dealing with the problem aren't doing enough, according to Lindsay Wochnick, a spokeswoman for the city's water and public works departments.
Residents in Hillsboro pay repairs and replacements to the city's stormwater system as part of their monthly city utility bill through a local service fee. Most residents pay about $1 per month in city fees for stormwater repairs.
The fee was set in 2015, and has helped pay for more than a dozen repair and replacement projects, Wochnick said, but the city still has a $130 million backlog of maintenance it needs to address. The city operates more than 8,600 catch basins and 270 miles of storm pipes.
To combat that backlog, the city is expected to raise that $1 per month rate, but by how much has yet to be decided.
To get public input, the city has launched an online survey in English and Spanish and is taking comments from residents by phone, email and in person. The city will host an open house on the topic at 5 p.m., Thursday, June 13 at Hillsboro Civic Center, 150 E. Main St.
The city is considering a handful of options, from raising the cost to $3 per month for five years, $3 for 10 years $5 for 10 years, $7 for 10 years or staggering the price changes over the next few years.
The City Council will discuss the fee in August. Public comments are being accepted through July 31.
For more information about the local service fee, call 503-615-6509 or visit Hillsboro-Oregon.gov/LocalServiceFee.
Have your say:
Public comments are being accepted through July 31
• Call the city at 503-615-6509
• Visit the city's Public Works department, 4415 N.E. 30th Ave., in Hillsboro
• Attend an open house, 5 p.m., Thursday, June 13 at Hillsboro Civic Center, 150 E. Main St.
• Stop by the city's book at Celebrate Hillsboro, July 20.