Aug 29, 2006

Storm Water Utility Fee Revoked

Commissioners in Trumbell County, Ohio, rescinded a storm water utility fee of $15 to $30 that was supposed to address an Environmental Protection Agency mandate that the county clean up its storm water.

The plan has been set aside less than a month after it was enacted.

According to The Vindicator, Commissioners Paul Heltzel and Dan Polivka voted to rescind the board's Aug. 3 decision. Commissioner James Tsagaris had voted for the measure earlier in the month, but was not in attendance at the last meeting.

Proponents of the storm water utility had discussed the matter with commissioners at a time when more pressing matters were at hand. The fee would have been on property tax bills from residents in Cortland, Girard, Hubbard, Niles and Newton Falls; McDonald Village; and townships of Bazetta, Brookfield, Champion, Howland, Hubbard, Liberty, Newton, Vienna and Warren.

Since the original decision has been made, Heltzel told The Vindicator that he was in need of more time. He expressed that delaying the decision for a month would not make a difference.

Polivka was not a proponent of the fee when it was originally approved, as he feels the climate does reflect a need for any changes.

The deadline set by the EPA is not until January 2008 for the area to meet the necessary storm water requirements. To make the necessary changes, a mechanism would be set up under the storm water utility to monitor discharges and enforce septic-system regulations.