Storm Water Utility
Storm Water and Flood Protection Charges
Funding to support capital and operations for vital storm water infrastructure and flood protection services is currently generated through two fees: the Storm Water Management Charge and the Flood Protection Program (FPP).
Storm Water Management Charge
Saskatoon’s Storm Water Management Charge is based on the Equivalent Runoff Unit (ERU) which represents the runoff from an average single family residential property. The 2018 rate for one ERU is $52.80 ($4.40 monthly), which is charged to single family residential properties regardless of property size.
Commercial, industrial, and multi-residential properties are charged for the proportional amount of runoff they create. These properties are charged a minimum of two ERUs ($105.60) and a maximum of 100 ERUs ($5,280) annually based on their size and the surface type.
The ERU rate will be increasing by $13.50 annually from 2019 to 2022.
Storm Water Charge Background
The Storm Water Utility was established in 2002 with uniform rates for all types of properties regardless of size or type to fund storm water services. In 2011, Saskatoon City Council approved changes to the Storm Water Utility rates to make them proportional to the storm water generated based on property size and surface type. The Equivalent Runoff Unit (ERU), used by many municipalities for storm water utility billing, was adopted.
Flood Protection Program Levy
The temporary Flood Protection Program (FPP) levy of $54.00 ($4.50 monthly) is charged for each water meter for all residential, commercial and industrial properties. The FPP will be phased out by $13.50 annually from 2019 to 2022.
Flood Protection Program Background
After intense rain events that caused sewer backups in 2005, a temporary Flood Protection Program levy was established with a $3.00 monthly charge on all water meters. The charge was increased to $4.50 in 2009. The funds generated through this program from 2005 to 2018 were used to fund damage from the 2005 flood, a sewer backwater valve program for affected areas, and installation of super pipes to reduce the risks of sanitary backups in the affected areas. This levy will be phased out between 2019 and 2022.
Rate Structure & Billing
Single Family Residential Properties
Single-family residential property owners are charged $4.40 for their Storm Water Management Charge and $4.50 per water meter for the FPP levy on their monthly utility statements.
From 2019 to 2022 the ERU rate will increase by $13.50 annually while the FPP will decrease by the same amount. Overall charges for storm water and flood protection for most residential properties will not change.
Commercial, Industrial, and Multi-Residential Properties
Storm Water Management Charges for commercial, industrial, and multi-residential properties are based on proportional runoff from their sites with a minimum of two ERUs ($105.60) and a maximum of 100 ERUs ($5,280). All property surfaces are considered when calculating the ERU value. Surfaces with higher perviousness such as grass and gravel produce less runoff and are therefore assessed a lower runoff value than more impervious surfaces such as roofs, driveways, and sidewalks. Commercial and industrial property owners are billed annually in mid-year and multi-residential properties are billed monthly for Storm Water Management Charges.
Commercial, industrial, and multi-residential properties may have multiple meters. The FPP levy is billed monthly for each meter, regardless of size.
From 2019 to 2022 the ERU rate will increase by $13.50 annually while the FPP will decrease by the same amount. Overall charges for storm water and flood protection for most commercial, industrial, and multi-residential properties will increase over this period.
Reduce Your Storm Water Management Charge
Commercial and industrial property owners can reduce their Storm Water Utility bill by making improvements to their properties such as private storage ponds, green roofs, permeable paving, rain gardens, or other “soft” landscaping that reduces runoff.
Owners are ‘credited’ for the equivalent amount of runoff that would be diverted during a storm event, due to the improvement. In addition to decreasing the amount of storm water that collects on properties, many of these improvements also provide environmental benefits.
Property owners may request a recalculation of their ERU value by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. An investigation is then conducted by an engineering technician to ensure the estimated amount is accurate. Credit will be given for improvements the property owner makes to decrease the hard surface area.