City Receives Grant for Stormwater Improvements
The City of Cape Coral, Florida, has received a $600,000 grant from the Florida department of Environmental Protection (dEP) for stormwater improvement projects in the city.
Cape Coral will use the funds to upgrade about 300 catch basins and install enhanced swales. The new catch basins will enhance water quality by enabling more stormwater runoff to filter into the ground, rather than flowing directly through storm drains.
Cape Coral maintains an extensive stormwater management program supported by an annual fee to all properties. The program includes street sweeping, swales, weirs, catch basins, stormwater pipes and dredging services.
Communities Studying New Stormwater Fees
Facing an aging infrastructure, Newport and Middletown, Rhode Island officials are considering adding a new fee to the water bill for residential and commercial customers. The flat fee would be based on the property’s impervious area, which includes surfaces such as rooftops, driveways, parking lots and sidewalks.
Rainwater carries contaminants into local water from lawns, streets, buildings and parking lots, causing beach closures and degraded aquatic ecosystems. “One of the big issues in Middletown is water quality,” said Middletown Town Administrator Shawn Brown. The annual fee for a 3,000-square-foot house would be about $84, and $336 for a 12,000-square-foot commercial property.
The revenue generated from the fee would be dedicated to stormwater infrastructure, such as catch basins, drainage pipes, street cleaning and treatment systems maintenance, all of which are currently funded through the tax rate.