On July 30, 2002, the City of Marathon(City) adopted Ordianance02-07-13titled Master Service Assessment Ordinance allowing the City to collect assessments as necessary for infrastructure purposes.
On March 10, 2004, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) designated the City OfMarathonas a regulated municipality under Phase II of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES). FDEP is authorized to designate the City as a regulated Phase II MS4 by criteria set forth in Rule 62-624.800, Florida Administrative Code (FAC).
One of the requirements of the MS4 designation was the requirement to institute a stormwater utility and commence a five year program to prohibit stormwater from running off our islands into Florida Outstanding Waters as well as other requirements which we are audited on annually.
On May 10, 2005, the City adopted Ordinance 2005-10 creating a stormwater utility and adopted an initial rate of $60 per Equivalent Residential Unit (ERU) for a single family home and 1 ERU for every 4,769 of impervious area for commercial properties. (This includes vacant properties) This money is collected through non-advalorem taxes annually. The first year of collection was 2005.
The assessment has remained at $60.00 annually until 2009. The City’s wastewater/stormwater/water reuse project necessitated the increase of the stormwater utility fee to fund the $23,215,485 stormwater construction project. The fee commencing 2009 is $120 per ERU. In the 30 year capital expenditure plan there is no plan for further increases of this fee.
When a municipality collects non-advalorem assessments they are required to hold Public Hearings annually. Additionally if the rate increases; as is the case with the stormwater assessment, first class letters must be mailed to all who fall within the assessment area. The letter you all have recently received is because of this requirement.