Stormwater Utility Fee Credit System
User fees supporting the DeKalb County stormwater program are based on the proportionate burden each property places on the County system for the safe conveyance and disposal of stormwater runoff. The user fees collected from property owners are used by the County to mitigate the damaging affects of changes in flow rate, volume and pollutant content of stormwater runoff from each property. Impervious ground cover is used to represent the degree to which County services are required to address these changes associated with urban development. To the extent that property owners mitigate the degrading effects of stormwater runoff before discharging to the County system (essentially pretreating their stormwater runoff), the burden placed on the County system is somewhat less than if no such mitigation were present. Therefore, the user fees for properties having certain stormwater management facilities are reduced through a credit system to recognize the benefits of privately owned and managed facilities.
In establishing criteria for stormwater user fee credits, guidelines provided by DeKalb County development regulations and the Georgia Stormwater Management Manual http://www.georgiastormwater.com/ were adopted. These guidelines are intended to alter the hydrologic response of developed lands to more closely resemble natural, undeveloped runoff conditions. Credits are offered in four categories, corresponding to the categories of management described in the Unified Stormwater Sizing Criteria of the Georgia Stormwater Management Manual:
1. Water quality
2. Channel protection
3. Overbank flood protection
4. Extreme flood protection
Credits are available for up to 40 percent of the user fee based on 10 percent for each of the four criteria outlined above. Additional discussion of the stormwater user fee credit system can be found in the Stormwater Utility Credit Manual.