Stormwater Service Fees
Why Do Residents Pay a Stormwater Service Fee?
Residents of the City of Greer, in both Greenville County and Spartanburg County, pay a Storm Water Service Fee.
Environmental Protection Agency Mandates
The City of Greer Storm Water Management Program and associated fees are a result of unfunded mandates from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control that forced the City of Greer to adopt required ordinances and fees. The EPA regulations are part of the Clean Water Act and constitute the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) requirements. The rules state that public entities that operate municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s) must require a permit to discharge water into waters of the State. These regulations are an unfunded governmental mandate with which the City of Greer must comply. Noncompliance is subject to criminal, civil, and administrative penalties.
Minimum Control Measures
The Storm Water Management Program addresses six minimum control measures required by the General Permit and constitutes a menu of best management practices, measurable goals, and timelines designed to improve water quality within the City of Greer, the respective county, and the State. Generally, the City must develop the legal authority to implement the program through new ordinances, zoning rules, fees, or other regulatory mechanisms that include sanctions to ensure compliance. The six minimum control measures include:
- Construction Site Storm Water Runoff Control
- Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
- Pollution Prevention/Good Housekeeping for Municipal Operations
- Post-Construction Storm Water Management in New and Re-development
- Public Education and Outreach
- Public Involvement/Participation
Parcel Benefits & Contributions
Every parcel of real property in the City either contributes to or benefits from the program either directly or indirectly and thus every parcel or real property shall be charged a portion of the costs of the program. It is the intent of the City to establish a reasonable and equitable storm water fee schedule. The fee schedule is based on the principle that users shall pay to the extent they contribute to the service demand and the fee must bear a substantial relationship to the cost of the service. In accordance with this principle the City's storm water fees are based on the amount of impervious area on the parcel. Impervious surfaces shall mean those hard surfaces which either prevent or retard the entry of water into the soil and include, such surfaces as roof tops, asphalt or concrete paving, driveways, parking lots, walkways, sidewalks, patio areas, storage areas, graveled areas or other surfaces which affect the natural infiltration.
Equivalent Residential Units (ERUs)
The mean average amount of impervious surface on all City developed properties constitutes the Equivalent Residential Unit (ERU). The ERU shall be the billing unit used in the formula for calculating the storm water fees for each parcel. The number of ERUs for all developed and undeveloped residential properties shall be 1. The number of ERUs for all developed non-residential properties shall be determined by the amount of impervious area on the property. The number of ERUs for all undeveloped nonresidential properties is 1.
View the City of Greer Comprehensive Fee Schedule (PDF) for all engineering and storm water fees.
The fee applies to:
- All developed and undeveloped residential property
- Commercial properties
- Developed and undeveloped nonresidential property
- Industrial properties
- Parking lots
- Recreational, institutional, and governmental facilities
- Single family homes, duplexes, triplexes, apartment buildings and complexes, and condominiums
Fee Uses & Appeals
Fees collected for the Storm Water Management Program can only be used to pay for costs to administer the storm water plan. Fees collected cannot be used for any other purpose. Civil penalties, up to $500, may be imposed for nonpayment of the fee.
An appeal of the fee may be made by filing a written notice of appeal with the City Administrator within 30 days of mailing or delivery of the notification of the fee. The appeal will be heard by a hearing officer appointed by City Council.
The Storm Water Service Fees Ordinance was approved by Greer City Council after two public readings and a public hearing.