Starting in 2024, residents and businesses will begin to see a stormwater utility fee with a reduction in the property tax mill rate. These funds will be used specifically to maintain our stormwater infrastructure which includes curb and gutter, storm inlets, in-ground piping, detention basins and open drainage channels.
By moving to this fee structure away from the general property tax structure it will help systematically lower the mill rate.
This fee structure is in alignment with our neighboring cities.
The fee structure is a more equitable method of allocating cost, with those properties having more impervious area (such as commercial sites) contributing more stormwater utility fees to support system maintenance.
In addition, it more accurately identifies the cost of stormwater management with a specific fee adding clarity to the cost of this specific service.
Starting in 2024, households not subject to a stormwater improvement assessment will be assessed a $75 annual fee which will be paid along with your property tax bill. These funds will be included in the 2024 budget.
Businesses and non-profit organizations will be assessed a rate per square foot of impervious surface on their site.
Starting in 2024, residents and businesses will see a reduction in the property tax mill rate. A reduction in the mill rate is anticipated in 2024, 2025, 2026 and 2027 as the stormwater utility fee is implemented City wide over a four year period.
Properties which currently pay a stormwater improvement assessment will not begin paying the stormwater utility fee until their stormwater improvement assessment expires. Roughly half of the single family properties in Roeland Park are currently subject to a stormwater improvement assessment. There are 3 improvement districts in place, one of the districts expires in 2024, another in 2025 and the final in 2026.
What uses are planned for the stormwater utility fees?
As the City completes its bi-annual residential street reconstruction project storm sewers will be added and/or replaced along with curb replacement along these streets.
On an annual basis the city completes street renovation projects along our arterial roadways with 50% of those costs covered by the County Assistance Road System. These projects also entail replacing curb, area inlets and corrugated metal storm pipe. The stormwater utility fees will be used as part of the City’s local match on these projects.
Bi-annual storm water improvement projects that are not adjoining a street are planned which entail replacing inlet structures and corrugated metal pipe located along rear property lines. The stormwater utility fees will be used as our local match to secure Stormwater Management Advisory Council of Johnson County grants which can cover up to 50% of project costs.
Monthly street sweeping and annual catch basin cleaning to keep the collection system free of blockages and working as originally designed.
Periodic maintenance of the open storm drainage channels within the community. This entails cleaning, erosion control, repairs and landscaping maintenance
How does a well maintained storm drainage system benefit me?
A properly maintained storm drainage system keeps surface (rain) water from flooding buildings and streets avoiding property damage and unsafe driving conditions.
Will I pay more or less money now towards the stormwater utility?
The intent is for the average single family home owner to pay roughly the same amount toward the storm water utility as they will see in property tax reduction.
The impact to commercial properties will depend upon how much impervious area they have and their taxable value; it will vary for each property.
Schools and Churches (who do not pay property taxes) will see an increase in what they pay based upon the amount of impervious area on their site.
When will I see my mill rate reduced because of this new fee structure?
A reduction in the property tax mill is anticipated in 2024, 2025, 2026, and 2027 in correlation with the increase in the stormwater utility fees being added in each of those respective years. The largest mill reduction is anticipated in 2024 and the subsequent reductions will be smaller.
Why is the City doing this now?
In 2020 Roeland Park completed a comprehensive single family cost of living analysis which highlighted the fact that neighboring cities with a stormwater utility fee enjoy a lower property tax mill rate. This has led to a phased implementation approach adopted by the City which takes into consideration the pending retirement of existing stormwater improvement assessments in order to avoid a property being subject to both an assessment and utility fee at the same time. The change in funding structure, away from a property tax to a user fee, is driven by concerns expressed by residents about Roeland Park’s mill rate being higher than the mill rate of neighboring cities.