Chapter 15.12
SEWER SERVICE

Sections:

15.12.005    Definitions.

15.12.010    Sewer service class.

15.12.020    Critical areas – Definition – Designation.

15.12.040    Sewer service connections.

15.12.050    Sewer service installation fees.

15.12.055    Alternative payment of sewer charges for city sewer system improvements.

15.12.060    Sewer service installation.

15.12.070    When main extension required.

15.12.080    Petition for sewer main extension.

15.12.090    Design of sewer main extension – Contract – Permit.

15.12.100    Construction of sewer main extension.

15.12.120    Record construction drawings required.

15.12.130    Utilizing main extensions.

15.12.140    Payment for sewer mains.

15.12.150    Sewer – Sewer fund.

15.12.160    Sewer installation permit fee.

15.12.165    Abandoned service.

15.12.170    Calculation of charges.

15.12.175    Sewer system development charge imposed.

15.12.180    Sewer use rates.

15.12.200    Rates for services outside the city.

15.12.210    Septage wastes – Use rates for dumping.

15.12.215    Tampering with sewer service after suspension.

15.12.220    Sewer fund.

15.12.225    Penalty.

15.12.005 Definitions.

“Biochemical oxygen demand” (abbreviated as “BOD”) means the amount of dissolved oxygen used by biological organisms in water to break down organic material present in a given water sample over five days at 20 degrees Celsius. The five day BOD determination shall be made by a laboratory accredited by the state of Washington for this method in accordance with standard procedures.

“Day” or “daily” means a 24-hour period commencing at midnight and concluding with the following midnight.

“Flow” means that quantity or volume in gallons of wastewater discharged into the sanitary sewer system.

“Milligrams per liter” (abbreviated as “mg/L”) means a measurement of concentration that shows a unit of mass equal to one thousandth (10-3) of a gram of a certain substance present in one liter of liquid.

“Septage” means the mixture of solid wastes, scum, sludge, and liquids pumped from within septic tanks, pump chambers, holding tanks, and other on-site sewage system components.

“Temporary discharge” means those wastewater discharges that are approved to provisionally be sent through the city’s wastewater collection system and can only be made upon written approval of the sewer authority. The rate structure detailed in BMC 15.12.180, 15.12.200 or 15.12.210 would apply based on the characteristics and strength of the temporary waste discharge.

“Total suspended solids” (abbreviated as “TSS”) means the amount of solids retained upon filtration through a glass fiber filter with a pore size 1.5 µm, from a sample of known volume. The TSS determination shall be made by a laboratory accredited by the state of Washington for this method in accordance with standard procedures.

“Utility service contract” means a contract providing the terms and conditions upon sewer districts or wholesale sewer customers are authorized to discharge water or wastes into the city’s sewer system.

“Wastewater” means liquid and water carried industrial wastes and sewage from residential dwellings, commercial buildings, industrial and manufacturing facilities, and institutions, whether treated or untreated, which are contributed to the flows received at the city of Bellingham’s wastewater treatment plant. [Ord. 2012-12-061 § 1].

15.12.010 Sewer service class.

The following types or classes of sewer service are provided by the city of Bellingham sewer utility:

A. Class 1 consists of all single-family residential properties, parcels and buildings including all duplexes, outbuildings, appurtenant structures or detached buildings on a single tract where the primary use of the property is residential. Unmetered duplexes in Class 1 shall pay twice the rate as unmetered stand-alone single-family residences. Duplexes with living units served by water meters shall be billed at the standard rate.

B. Class 2 consists of all multifamily residential properties, condominiums, apartments, residence halls, parcels and buildings or portions thereof on a single tract that are not considered Class 1 but where the primary use is residential.

C. Class 3 consists of all commercial and industrial properties, buildings, mixed use developments where separate meters are not provided, and any other non-residential use, such as restaurants, dry cleaners, hotels, laundry facilities, swimming pools or other similar uses, where the strength of the wastewater has a five-day BOD less than 235 mg/L and a TSS less than 270 mg/L.

D. Class 4 consists of all commercial and industrial properties, buildings, mixed use developments where separate meters are not provided, and any other non-residential use, such as restaurants, dry cleaners, hotels, laundry facilities, swimming pools or other similar uses, where the strength of the wastewater has a five-day BOD greater than or equal to 235 mg/L but less than 500 mg/L or a TSS greater than or equal to 270 mg/L, but less than 500 mg/L.

E. Class 5 consists of all commercial and industrial properties, buildings, mixed use developments where separate meters are not provided, and any other non-residential use, such as restaurants, dry cleaners, hotels, laundry facilities, swimming pools or other similar uses, where the strength of the wastewater has a five-day BOD greater than 500 mg/L or a TSS greater than 500 mg/L.

F. Wholesale service is service provided by a utility service contract outside of city limits for sewer treatment, collection or conveyance. Contracts for wholesale services shall be limited to governmental entities or special purpose districts and shall specify the method of payment, means of measurement and service limitations as may be appropriate. [Ord. 2012-12-061 § 2; Ord. 10093 § 11, 1990; Ord. 8982 § 40, 1981].

15.12.020 Critical areas – Definition – Designation.

A. A critical area means any portion of the sewer service zone, either inside or outside the corporate limits of the city, in which the sewer mains do not have adequate capacity to accept additional flow.

B. The director of public works shall determine areas proposed as critical areas. Accepted good engineering practice shall be used as evaluation criteria, and may include determinations based on backup reports and/or surcharged lines.

C. The declaration of a critical area and a moratorium on future sewer connections and/or extensions in the critical area shall be made by ordinance. [Ord. 8982 § 41, 1981].

15.12.040 Sewer service connections.

A. The owner of any premises containing sanitary sewer drains shall connect such drains to the city sewer system when the premises is located within city limits and fully abuts a public street or utility easement through which there is a city sewer main. Persons who fail to connect to the city sewer system as required herein shall pay a penalty in an amount equal to the charge that would be made for sewer service if the premises was connected to the city’s sewer system, which amount shall be paid to the city at the times and in the manner provided by ordinance for the payment and collection of sewer service charges. Amounts paid on unconnected premises on or after January 1, 2002, shall be credited toward sewer connection charges, including system development charges, applicable to the premises at such time as the premises connects to city sewer; provided, that the maximum amount of the credit authorized under this subsection shall be equal to the total amount of connection charges due at the time of connection. In the event of any nonpayment of the penalty imposed herein, the city shall have all remedies provided in this title and any other applicable law for the collection of delinquent sewer charges, including liens and shutting off water service. The public works director is authorized to waive the requirements of this subsection in those limited circumstances when topography or other physical characteristics of the land make it impracticable to connect the premises to the city sewer system.

B. When the premises is within city limits and abuts upon a street or city-owned utility easement through which there is a city sewer main, the premises’ owner may apply for service. Upon approval of the service application by the director of public works and upon such conditions as required by the director, the department of public works shall issue a permit authorizing the premises to be connected to the system. Decisions of the public works director on applications for sewer service under this subsection may be appealed to the hearing examiner. The written appeal and the appeal fee, if any, must be received by the public works department by no later than 5:00 p.m. on the fourteenth day following the date the decision was issued.

C. Any person desiring to have a premises connected with the city sewer system shall make application to the public works department on printed forms furnished for that purpose. Every such application shall be made by the owner or the purchaser under a real estate contract of the premises to be benefited, or by his authorized agent. The application must describe the property to be served, state fully the purposes for which the sewer service is required, and indicate that by signing the form, the applicant agrees to conform to the ordinances, rules, and regulations established as conditions for use of sewer services, and further agrees, as a condition to the furnishing of sewer services, that the city has the right to shut off the sewer service as required for such things as, by way of example, nonpayment, repairs, extensions, denial of reasonable and lawful access to measure and sample flow or doing other necessary work.

1. Each person desiring to make a new connection to the city’s public sewer for the purpose of discharging commercial or industrial wastes shall prepare and file with the public works department a written statement that shall include actual or predicted data relating to the quantity and characteristics of the waste to be discharged.

2. In the event the written statement shows that the user will discharge an average daily flow in excess of 250,000 gallons in any given 24-hour period or a daily loading of suspended solids in excess of 500 mg/L or a five-day BOD in excess of 500 mg/L, the requesting party shall, as a condition precedent to receiving any sewer service whatsoever, construct and install at his own cost and expense a measurement, sampling and sample storage facility to monitor all wastes entering the public sewer. Such facilities shall be constructed and installed in conformance with Department of Health and Department of Ecology standards and protocols for testing or as otherwise determined by the director. Such facilities shall be dedicated to the city at no cost.

3. Upon installation and acceptance such facilities shall thereafter at all times be maintained by the city in a safe condition and in proper operating condition and shall be readily accessible to city personnel for reading and inspection.

D. When the premises within the city limits for which service is sought does not fully abut upon a street or city-owned utility easement through which there is a city sewer main, the application for service may be accepted for review; however, the utility must be constructed and accepted by the city prior to approval of building permits for the adjacent land use. The public works director has the administrative authority to determine if the property requesting service is the last developable lot and may grant an exception for service without requiring a main extension. However, when the city of Bellingham has begun constructing a city sewer main that will allow an applicant’s premises to abut upon a street or city-owned utility easement through which there will be a city sewer main and the applicant has a commercial, multifamily or industrial project on the premises, the department of public works may, in its sole discretion, accept the application and issue a permit authorizing the premises to be connected to the system, provided a certificate of occupancy shall not be issued for the premises until the sewer connection is functioning and providing sewer service to the premises.

E. When the premises for which service is sought is within a critical service area under BMC 15.12.020, the application shall be rejected.

F. When the premises for which service is sought will discharge more waste than the available capacity of the sewer main, as determined by the department of public works, the application for service may be accepted for review; however, the deficiency of capacity must be improved prior to issuance of the permit.

G. Infill housing sites developed under Chapter 20.28 BMC may be divided into lots that do not abut a water main, provided:

1. The parent site meets the requirements of this section;

2. A separate private sewer service line is installed to city standards from a main to each lot prior to final plat approval;

3. The public works director determines that no main extension is necessary for the orderly extension or efficient looping of the public sewer system.

H. As a condition of service all new sewer customers after January 1, 2013, shall be connected to city of Bellingham water system and shall have a water meter installed. [Ord. 2014-06-028; Ord. 2012-12-061 § 3; Ord. 2009-08-048; Ord. 2008-08-082; Ord. 2006-08-082; Ord. 2003-08-056; Ord. 8982 § 43, 1981].

15.12.050 Sewer service installation fees.

A. Prior to approval of an application for sewer service by the director of public works, the fees and charges applicable to the requested service shall be determined and paid, except as specifically exempted in BMC 15.12.055. The charges consist of the costs of connection, the property owner’s equitable share of the cost of the sewer system (the “equitable share costs”), assessments, and other charges as specified in this chapter.

B. Except as specifically exempted in BMC 15.12.055, specified fees shall be paid to the finance director in full at the time of application. The finance director shall advise the department of public works when payment has been received or the requirements of BMC 15.12.055 have been fully satisfied. [Ord. 2002-02-011 § 1; Ord. 8982 § 44, 1981].

15.12.055 Alternative payment of sewer charges for city sewer system improvements.

A. The owner of the property being assessed charges under this chapter may elect to pay the charges, interest on the charges, if any, and other related fees and assessments for city sewer system improvements in one of the following ways:

1. Whenever the property owner being assessed charges under Chapter 15.12 BMC elects to connect to the city sewer system improvement, the property owner subject to assessment shall make payment as provided for in BMC 15.12.050; or

2. Alternatively, the property owner may elect to finance the property owner’s equitable share of the costs of a city sewer system improvement (the “equitable share costs”) and any applicable interest thereon for a period of either five or 10 years, at the property owner’s election. Payments shall be made on a monthly basis as determined by the city. Early payoff of the entire amount owed at the time of payoff is authorized in accordance with the procedure that will be set by the finance director. An administrative setup fee will be charged to allow the city to recover the administrative costs and expenses incurred in setting up the financing. This administrative setup fee shall be set by the finance director and shall be adjusted annually to reflect any applicable inflation or cost increases. The financing shall not include any fees or charges other than the equitable share costs and the interest thereon. By way of example and not limitation, the property owner will not be allowed to finance the actual connection charges, any permit fees or the administrative fee to set up the financing option. If this financing option is chosen, the financed equitable share costs shall incur interest at a rate fixed at the federal reserve rate for a five- or 10-year treasury note, depending upon the length of financing. The federal reserve rate for the applicable treasury note shall be determined by the finance director based upon the rate on the date the financing agreement is signed by the property owner.

B. The minimum qualifications to use the financing payment method specified in this section are as follows:

1. The project being assessed must be a city sewer system improvement. As used in this section, “city sewer system improvement” shall mean a city of Bellingham sewer system project and not a private developer’s sewer project; and

2. The property owner applying for the financing payment method must be an existing city water customer and must be legally receiving city water service; and

3. The property owner applying for the financing payment method must be current on all utility payments to the city and must agree to stay current throughout the term of the financing agreement; and

4. The property being served must be an owner-occupied single-family residence and the property owner must agree to maintain single-family residence status during the entire term of the financing agreement; and

5. A financing agreement must be executed before hookup to the city sewer system improvement; and

6. As a condition precedent to the city signing the financing agreement, the property owner must execute a lien against the property served to secure payment of the equitable share costs and interest thereon and agree that water service may be discontinued for nonpayment of the equitable share costs and interest financed hereunder; and

7. Under this financing payment method, no sewer permit will be issued without all applicable fees being paid in full.

C. Unless otherwise duly modified by ordinance, this alternative payment option as provided for in this section shall only apply to those properties within the sewer project boundaries for the Yew Street Road and James Street projects of 2001 and only to those property owners who shall elect to participate in this alternative payment option program within three years from the date of the ordinance codified in this chapter’s final passage. [Ord. 2002-02-011 § 2].

15.12.060 Sewer service installation.

A. All sewer service connections shall be in accordance with the Uniform Plumbing Code and city engineering specifications.

B. All materials used for a sewer service connection shall be accepted for use on the system by the department of public works.

C. The connection to the city system shall be done by a contractor licensed to do such work by the state.

D. The connection to the city system shall not be covered until inspected and approved by the department of public works.

E. The property owner is responsible for the maintenance of the entire service connection, including that portion within the city right-of-way or utility easement. The city shall not be liable for any damages or costs incurred by reason of blockage or deterioration of a sewer service, up to its connection with the city main. [Ord. 8982 § 45, 1981].

15.12.070 When main extension required.

A main extension is required whenever property within the city limits is developed and that property does not fully abut a sewer main, or when the existing abutting sewer main does not have adequate capacity. When the property is the last developable lot that can be served, the public works director is authorized to waive this requirement administratively. If an existing lot is more than 200 feet from an existing gravity sewer main, a septic tank may be used in lieu of a sewer main extension if the design is approved by the Whatcom County health department. However, all development in the Lake Whatcom watershed shall be required to connect to sewer regardless of the distance to the nearest main. [Ord. 2007-04-031; Ord. 8982 § 46, 1981].

15.12.080 Petition for sewer main extension.

A. The person desiring a main extension shall petition the director of public works requesting permission to extend the city’s sewer system.

B. The director of public works shall review the request, and if the requested extension is determined to be a desirable extension of the sewer system, shall provide the petitioner with the design requirements for the extension. If the requested main extension is determined to be an undesirable extension of the sewer system, the petition shall be denied. [Ord. 8982 § 47, 1981].

15.12.090 Design of sewer main extension – Contract – Permit.

A. Upon receipt of the design requirements from the department of public works, the petitioner shall cause the plans and specifications for the extension to be prepared. All design and construction drawings and specifications shall be in accordance with engineering standards adopted by the department of public works. The completed design and specifications, having a valid professional engineer’s seal and endorsement, shall be submitted to the department of public works for review and approval.

B. The project for main construction will be carried out in accordance with the provisions of a contract entered into between the city and the petitioner. In the discretion of the director of public works, appropriate security may be required covering construction performance and guaranteeing the construction after completion for a period of one year.

C. After approval of the design and construction details, the department of public works shall provide the petitioner with an estimate of the construction inspection fee. A permit for construction will be issued after the inspection fees have been deposited with the finance director. [Ord. 9234 § 7, 1983; Ord. 8982 § 48, 1981].

15.12.100 Construction of sewer main extension.

A. The petitioner shall contract with a contractor to install the main extension as approved by the department of public works. The contractor shall be licensed to perform the construction.

B. The department of public works shall inspect the installation of the sewer main to ensure compliance with the specifications. The charges for such inspection, including administrative and overhead charges, shall be withdrawn from the construction inspection fee deposited with the finance director. At such time as the director of public works determines the remaining funds are not adequate to provide necessary inspection for the project, the petitioner shall be notified and an estimate of additional inspection fee required will be provided. The additional fees shall be deposited with the finance director prior to depletion of the funds on deposit. The city reserves the right to reject any installation not inspected and approved by the department of public works. Any moneys unexpended from the inspection fee upon completion of the project shall be returned to the petitioner.

C. When a main extension is to serve a single-family residential area, individual services shall be installed by the developer to serve each proposed building site. These services shall be installed to city standards. All fees and charges for installation of the services shall be paid at the time a plumbing permit is obtained. [Ord. 8982 § 49, 1981].

15.12.120 Record construction drawings required.

A. Upon completion of a main extension, the petitioner shall provide the department of public works a reproducible mylar drawing that accurately indicates the main extension and appurtenances as actually installed, in plan and profile (“record construction drawing”).

B. No main extension will be accepted until satisfactory record construction drawings are provided to and approved by the director of public works or his designee. [Ord. 2006-08-082; Ord. 8982 § 50, 1981].

15.12.130 Utilizing main extensions.

No main extension shall be utilized other than for test purposes by duly authorized personnel until the main extension has been accepted by the city and all fees and charges have been paid. [Ord. 8982 § 51, 1981].

15.12.140 Payment for sewer mains.

A. Sewer mains laid in public rights-of-way or easements and connected to city mains may be paid for by:

1. The person benefiting from the installation; or

2. The city; or

3. A local improvement district, as provided by law.

B. The city may, in accordance with state law, grant the person constructing a new sewer main the right to reimbursement from other abutting property owners benefited by the improvement pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 14.02 BMC. [Ord. 10906 §§ 1, 4, 1997; Ord. 8982 § 52, 1981].

15.12.150 Sewer – Sewer fund.

A. All accounts for sewers shall be kept by the finance director by reference to the address, or if necessary, the legal description of the property to which water service is provided.

B. Accounts are due upon receipt of billing and are delinquent if not paid prior to the next regular billing period.

C. Delinquent accounts are assessed a late-charge penalty, and said penalty shall be imposed for each billing period until all arrearages are paid. [Ord. 2006-08-082; Ord. 8982 § 53, 1981].

15.12.160 Sewer installation permit fee.

An application permit fee is charged for each service connection application. The fee for application shall be determined by the public works director by separate fee schedule. [Ord. 2012-12-061 § 4; Ord. 2004-11-081 § 13; Ord. 9618 § 20, 1986; Ord. 9073 § 7, 1982; Ord. 8982 § 45, 1981].

15.12.165 Abandoned service.

A. An abandoned service is any sewer service that has not been used for a period of three years or longer except for services installed as part of a main extension and not put into service, which will not be considered abandoned. Additionally, an abandoned water service under BMC 15.08.200 shall also mean the sewer service is abandoned. Abandonment under this section shall not relieve the property owner or other responsible party of any financial responsibility for charges incurred at the premises for sewer service.

B. A property with an abandoned city sewer service located outside the city’s corporate limits but within the city’s urban growth area may apply for one new single-family sewer service.

C. A new sewer service for a premises where an abandoned service exists may use the existing abandoned sewer service if it is determined to be in a satisfactory condition in writing by a licensed plumber, a copy of which shall be provided to the department of public works. A credit for the system development charge shall be provided as set forth in BMC 15.12.170. All fees and charges shall be the same as for a new service. [Ord. 2012-05-025 § 3; Ord. 2012-01-002 § 2; Ord. 2006-08-082; Ord. 9371 § 2, 1984].

15.12.170 Calculation of charges.

A. Charges imposed to connect to and receive city sewer service shall consist of the following:

1. A system development charge determined pursuant to BMC 15.12.175(A).

2. The connection fee for the specific property involved, as determined by the department of public works, to ensure that each connected property bears its equitable share of the cost of the system, plus interest pursuant to BMC 15.12.175(B).

B. Moneys collected as provided under this section shall be deposited in a capital cash line within the sewer fund.

C. Credits for System Development Charge.

1. If a water service is exchanged for a larger service, the system development charge shall be due and payable along with the water demand charge. Credit for previous services shall be given according to current rates.

2. If a water service is exchanged for a smaller service, no refund of the system development charge will be given.

3. If an abandoned service is reactivated, credit shall be given for the last service size in use. Flat rate single-family service will be considered a five-eighths-inch service. Value of the credit shall be the current charges for the service reactivated irrespective of whether a fee was ever collected.

D. Upon application by the owner, a partial exemption of not more than 80 percent of the system development charge imposed by this chapter may be granted to a low-income housing development, as defined below:

1. The director of planning and community development, after consultation with the director of public works, may grant an exemption to a low-income housing project listed in an annual consolidated action plan approved by city council.

2. The city council may grant an exemption to a low-income housing project not included in an annual consolidated action plan.

3. The decision to grant, partially grant or deny an exemption shall be based on the public benefit of the specific project, the extent to which the applicant has sought other funding sources, the financial hardship to the project of paying the system development charge, the impacts of the project on public facilities and services, and the consistency of the project with adopted city plans and policies relating to low-income housing.

4. An exemption granted under this subsection must be conditioned upon requiring the developer to record a covenant approved by the director of planning and community development that prohibits using the property for any purpose other than for low-income housing. At a minimum, the covenant must address price restrictions and household income limits for the low-income housing, and require that, if the property is converted to a use other than for low-income housing as defined in the covenant, the property owner must pay the applicable system development charge in effect at the time of any conversion. Covenants required by this subsection must be recorded with the Whatcom County auditor.

5. “Low-income housing” means housing with a monthly housing expense that is no greater than 30 percent of 80 percent of the median family income adjusted for family size, for Bellingham, as reported by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.

E. The system development charge imposed by this chapter may be reduced for qualifying projects in targeted urban villages, as outlined in BMC 20.37.030. [Ord. 2015-12-048 § 3; Ord. 2015-07-029 § 5; Ord. 2012-05-025 § 4; Ord. 2007-12-108; Ord. 2004-11-081 § 14; Ord. 9846 § 6, 1988; Ord. 9371 § 1, 1984; Ord. 8982 § 55, 1981].

15.12.175 Sewer system development charge imposed.

A. The system development charges for new sewer service or exchange services shall be determined by the adjusted size (not including standby fire protection for single-family residential) of the water service serving the premises and shall be imposed as follows:

1. Beginning on January 1, 2008, and continuing thereafter, the charge shall be:

Water Service Type

Sewer System Development Charge

Single-Family Residential

$5,536.00

3/4" meter

$8,304.00

1" meter

$13,840.00

1-1/2" meter

$27,680.00

2" meter

$44,288.00

3" meter

$88,576.00

4" meter

$139,400.00

6" meter

$276,855.00

8" meter

$442,969.00

10" meter

$692,139.00

2. Beginning on January 1, 2009, and continuing thereafter, the charge shall be:

Water Service Type

Sewer System Development Charge

Single-Family Residential

$7,637.00

3/4" meter

$11,456.00

1" meter

$19,093.00

1-1/2" meter

$38,185.00

2" meter

$61,097.00

3" meter

$122,193.00

4" meter

$190,927.00

6" meter

$381,911.00

8" meter

$611,058.00

10" meter

$954,778.00

For meter sizes greater than four inches, the system development charge may be adjusted if it can be shown through an engineering analysis that the actual meter flow equivalents are less than shown above. For industrial connections, the system development charge shall equal the anticipated peak daily flow divided by 405, times $2,750.

B. The connection fees hereunder shall accrue interest at the rate fixed at the federal reserve rate for a 10-year treasury note, as determined on the recording date of the statement of intent to collect; provided, that interest shall only be accrued for a period not to exceed 10 years; and provided further, that no interest shall be collected within the first 90 days of recording of the statement of intent to collect; and provided further, that the aggregate amount of the interest shall not exceed the equitable share of the cost of the system allocated to a given property owner.

C. Where a property owner is eliminating a septic system and connecting to a sanitary sewer for a single-family residence, the system development charge rates shown in subsection (A) of this section shall be reduced by 80 percent. [Ord. 2011-03-008; Ord. 2008-02-015; Ord. 2007-12-108; Ord. 2004-10-071; Ord. 2003-10-069; Ord. 2002-01-002; Ord. 9846 § 7, 1988; Ord. 9738 § 2, 1987; Ord. 9618 § 21, 1986; Ord. 9371 § 1, 1984; Ord. 8982 § 56, 1981].

15.12.180 Sewer use rates.

A. Class 1. The usage rate for Class 1 customers shall be a flat rate as follows:

$33.97 per month beginning January 1, 2013;

$35.07 per month beginning January 1, 2014;

$37.24 per month beginning January 1, 2015;

$39.47 per month beginning January 1, 2016;

$41.66 per month beginning January 1, 2017;

$43.16 per month beginning January 1, 2018.

B. Class 2. The usage rate for Class 2 customers shall consist of a monthly fixed charge plus a volumetric based charge for consumption in excess of 800 cubic feet (5,984 gallons) as measured at the domestic water meter per month as follows:

Base rate of $33.97 per month plus $4.09 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2013;

Base rate of $35.07 per month plus $4.66 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2014;

Base rate of $37.24 per month plus $4.99 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2015;

Base rate of $39.47 per month plus $5.43 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2016;

Base rate of $41.66 per month plus $5.80 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2017;

Base rate of $43.16 per month plus $6.07 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2018.

C. Class 3. The usage rate for Class 3 customers shall consist of a monthly fixed charge plus a volumetric based charge for consumption in excess of 800 cubic feet (5,984 gallons) as measured at the domestic water meter per month as follows:

Base rate of $33.97 per month plus $4.09 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2013;

Base rate of $35.07 per month plus $4.66 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2014;

Base rate of $37.24 per month plus $4.99 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2015;

Base rate of $39.47 per month plus $5.43 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2016;

Base rate of $41.66 per month plus $5.80 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2017;

Base rate of $43.16 per month plus $6.07 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2018.

D. Class 4. The usage rate for Class 4 customers shall consist of a monthly fixed charge plus a volumetric based charge for consumption in excess of 800 cubic feet (5,984 gallons) as measured at the domestic water meter per month as follows:

Base rate of $33.97 per month plus $4.09 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2013;

Base rate of $35.07 per month plus $4.66 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2014;

Base rate of $37.24 per month plus $4.99 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2015;

Base rate of $39.47 per month plus $5.43 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2016;

Base rate of $41.66 per month plus $5.80 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2017;

Base rate of $43.16 per month plus $6.07 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2018.

E. Class 5. The usage rate for Class 5 customers shall consist of a monthly fixed charge plus a volumetric based charge for consumption in excess of 800 cubic feet (5,984 gallons) as measured at the domestic water meter per month as follows:

Base rate of $33.97 per month plus $4.09 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2013;

Base rate of $44.35 per month plus $6.09 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2014;

Base rate of $56.84 per month plus $7.83 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2015;

Base rate of $59.84 per month plus $8.44 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2016;

Base rate of $62.97 per month plus $8.98 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2017;

Base rate of $65.23 per month plus $9.40 per 100 cubic feet beginning January 1, 2018.

F. Unless otherwise abrogated by the city council, beginning January 1, 2019, and each year thereafter, the sewer utility rates levied in 2018 shall continue with an annual adjustment each year in January by an inflationary factor tied to the Consumer Price Index, All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton index. The inflationary factor shall be calculated and rates shall be adjusted by the finance director in September of each year using 12 prior months of Consumer Price Index data. [Ord. 2012-12-061 § 5; Ord. 2007-12-108; Ord. 2004-11-081; Ord. 2004-10-071; Ord. 10364 § 2, 1992; Ord. 10093 § 2, 1990; Ord. 9846 § 8, 1988; Ord. 9628, 1986; Ord. 9618 § 22, 1986; Ord. 9371 § 1, 1984; Ord. 9159 § 2, 1982; Ord. 8982 § 57, 1981].

15.12.200 Rates for services outside the city.

Rates for all services located outside of the corporate limits of the city are computed in the same manner as similar services within the city, except that the rates are increased by a surcharge of 50 percent excluding services provided by contract agreement with a sewer district or association in accordance with Chapter 15.36 BMC. [Ord. 2012-12-061 § 7; Ord. 10093 § 12, 1991; Ord. 8982 § 59, 1981].

15.12.210 Septage wastes – Use rates for dumping.

A. Septic tank or other septage wastes, hauled liquid waste, construction waste water, polluted stormwater runoff, chlorinated water or other liquid waste generated within Whatcom County may be discharged at the wastewater treatment plant or to the city of Bellingham sewer system with the written authorization of the public works director or designee. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the city to receive septage or other liquid waste.

B. The use rate for dumping septage tank wastes shall be considered a special service fee and shall be determined by the public works director annually and published by December 1st of each year. In publishing rates, the public works director shall at a minimum post a visible notice at the wastewater plant, provide the proposed rates to the city clerk, finance director and the city council. Rates published by the public works director shall take effect on January 1st following publication unless otherwise abrogated by the city council. In establishing special service fee rates for septage receiving, the public works director shall consider total volume and strength, based on biological oxygen demand (BOD) and total suspended solids (TSS).

C. For other liquid waste discharged on a short-term basis, the public works director shall determine a discharge fee consistent with the use rates outlined in this chapter and shall establish such terms and conditions for discharge as may be needed to comply with the city’s operating permits.

D. The following practices and prohibitions apply to all septage or liquid waste hauled to the Bellingham wastewater treatment plant:

1. Decanting of septage waste prior to discharge to the city treatment plant is not allowed.

2. Septage discharged to the treatment plant should not contain any measurable fats, oil or greases.

3. Sampling of each septage load must occur at the time of discharge by the hauler, utilizing containers provided by the city.

E. The public works director shall establish policies and procedures for the septage and liquid waste receiving and billing; provided, that said procedures shall be consistent with policies set forth by the finance director for payment and collection of fees. [Ord. 2012-12-061 § 8; Ord. 2007-01-001; Ord. 2006-08-082; Ord. 2002-02-014; Ord. 10364 § 5, 1992; Ord. 10150 § 1, 1991; Ord. 10093 § 4, 1990; Ord. 9846 § 10, 1988; Ord. 9371 § 1, 1984; Ord. 8982 § 60, 1981].

15.12.215 Tampering with sewer service after suspension.

A. Should any person reconnect a sewer service without authorization after it has been shut off by the city, the account shall be assessed the tampering fee for the first occurrence. If additional incidents of tampering occur, the account shall be assessed twice the tampering fee for each additional occurrence. This fee shall be in addition to any tampering fee that may be charged in regards to tampering with a water service.

B. The tampering fee is $75.00 for the first occurrence.

C. Owners or purchasers under a real estate contract of the premises who do not occupy the premises will, if possible, be notified of the imposition of a tampering fee. [Ord. 2006-08-082; Ord. 2004-11-081 § 16; Ord. 9618 § 24, 1986].

15.12.220 Sewer fund.

A. There is created the sewer fund, into which shall be deposited all income for sewer use charges.

B. Moneys in the sewer fund are used for the operation and maintenance of the city’s sewer system. [Ord. 8982 § 61, 1981].

15.12.225 Penalty.

There shall be imposed a late-payment penalty of one and one-half percent of the amount owing pursuant to BMC 15.12.210. This penalty shall be levied on all payments that are 15 days past the due date and shall apply to all amounts outstanding. [Ord. 2001-11-081 § 17; Ord. 2001-02-007; Ord. 10538, 1994].