Stormwater fees go into effect in the Star City - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Stormwater fees go into effect in the Star City

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ROANOKE (WSLS) -While the star city is now dedicated to cleaning up local streams, and managing drainage systems , it is going to take a lot of money to do it.

Roanoke city engineer Phil Schirmer says of the 13 major watersheds in Roanoke 7 are listed as "impaired" by the Department of Environmental Quality.

"We need to have the resources in place to be able to deal with these issues," Schirmer said.

The city has worked on this for ten years. Now that state regulations are the responsibility of local governments, Roanoke City has decided the best way to make it work  is for everyone to pay for their contribution to the problem.

Starting Tuesday all home, property and business owners will be charged thirty cents per five hundred square feet of surfaces that cause water run off like roofs, driveways and sidewalks.

Next year the fee will increase to sixty cents, and finally in 2016 it will stay at 90 cents. On average each person will pay about five dollars and fifty cents per month, billed twice a year.

Schirmer says it's a similar system being used around the state, but at a lower cost.

"Of all of the places in virginia that has a stormwater fee we really at the low end of the scale so it's a very modest fee."

You can look online to find out exactly how much you owe by typing in your address. It will then take you to your property and outline your cost.

There are also ways to cut your bill in half by simple modifications to your home or garden or even making rain barrels.

Each locality is dealing with storm water a little differently - but star city leaders hope their plan will be affordable for it's citizens, all while cleaning up their water.

To find out about how these new stormwater regulations will impact your area, click the links below.

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