Berlin Gets Stormwater Utility Fee - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Berlin Gets Stormwater Utility Fee

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BERLIN, Md.- Swift moving water rushing across roadways, flooded yards and a storm water system backed up with downpour, is what the town of Berlin had to deal with, when Hurricane Sandy dumped 13-inches of rainfall on Berlin, in 2012. 

"Stormwater is a problem in the town of Berlin," said Ryan Bergey. 

Town officials hope to change that. Berlin council members passed a bill aimed at reducing flooding, erosion and polluted runoff from rainfall that has dropped on the town each year.

But businessman Bergey says this new legislation could drop a fat check in the laps of business owners.

"Whether you do it through a stormwater management fee or you do it through taxes, the taxpayers, the residents, the businesses are going to have to pay for it," Bergey said.

According to this new stormwater utility ordinance, non-residential property owners would pay per square feet, while residential property owners would see an increase in their monthly bills.

"So, as a resident, you're probably going to see about $4.17 on your monthly bill from the town of Berlin for the stormwater," Bergey said.

If Berlin gets a better storm drainage system, Tony Prochazka of Berlin says he would cough up an extra couple bucks to fund it.

"I don't mind paying an extra $50 a year, if it's going to be more secure to live here and the house isn't going to get flooded," Prochazka said.

But other folks say it doesn't rain money, so why cause another fiscal storm.

"It's tough. And when you always got an extra bill and you don't have enough money coming in, it's always tough," said NeShawn Briddell of Berlin.

This new storm water project would cost thousands of dollars,  which Berlin Mayor Gee Williams says is worth it.

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