CHAPTER 2
STORM AND SURFACE WATER DRAINAGE

SECTION:

8-2-1:    Billing, Payment And Termination And Reinstatement Of Service

8-2-2:    Rate Reductions

8-2-3:    Determination Of Category Of Property And Calculation Of Charges

8-2-4:    Adjustment Of Category Due To Development Or Changes

8-2-5:    Appeal From Category Determination And Assessment

8-2-6:    Severability

8-2-7:    Surface Water System Development Charge

8-2-1 BILLING, PAYMENT AND TERMINATION AND REINSTATEMENT OF SERVICE:

A.    Billing Procedures: The utility, jointly with the Administrative Services Department, may establish procedures pertaining to the billing and collection of service charges and other fees imposed by the utility. (Ord. 4065, 5-11-87; Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

1.    Bills Due: All bills for storm drainage service as set forth in this Chapter, or as same may be amended from time to time, shall become due and payable at the office of the Administrative Services Administrator, or such other place as the City may designate, not later than twenty five (25) days from the date of billing. If the charges billed are not paid within the twenty (20) day period from the due date, such charges shall become delinquent. Once the charges become delinquent, there shall be added a late fee of ten percent (10%) of the past due charges but not less than fifty cents ($0.50) to compensate the City for handling the past due account, subsequent billings and any collection action taken. (Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

2.    Determination of Delinquency: On the predetermined day of each and every month, it shall be the duty of the person collecting utility service charges to make out in duplicate and deliver to the Administrative Services Administrator a list of all delinquent customers and a description of the premises to which water service is being provided. Upon receipt of such delinquency list, it shall be the duty of the Administrative Services Administrator forthwith to notify the customer in writing of the delinquency and that the water service may be terminated within ten (10) days if the delinquency is not paid or an appeal is not filed. (Ord. 4460, 7-18-94; Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

3.    Notice of Delinquency: Notice of such delinquency shall be mailed in the manner provided herein for a bill. In lieu of a mailed notice, a delinquency notice may be served upon such user or occupant.

4.    Receipt of Mail: Notices and bills properly addressed and deposited in the mail to such user or occupant are deemed to have been received, and failure to receive such mail or rejection or return of the mail shall not be a valid defense for failure to pay any charge. Any change in ownership of property or change in mailing address must be properly filed in writing with the office of the Administrative Services Administrator or the duly designated representative by the current owner. (Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

5.    Lien and Enforcement: Any such delinquent charges shall become a lien against the property for which the storm and surface water drainage collection service is rendered. A notice of the City’s lien for storm and surface water drainage collection service specifying the charges, the period covered by the charges, and giving the legal description of the premises sought to be charged, shall be filed with the office of the King County Auditor within the time required by RCW 35.67.210, shall be foreclosed in the manner set forth in RCW 35.67.240 and within the time prescribed in RCW 35.67.230. The City shall have the right to claim its collection costs and attorney’s fees for foreclosure of the lien. (Ord. 5275, 4-16-07)

6.    Responsibility for Charges: The customer receiving the collection services shall have a personal obligation to pay charges for said services. This obligation is in addition to the obligations detailed in this section. The City’s storm and surface water drainage utility shall have the absolute authority, except as limited by law, to refuse to furnish service to, to discontinue service to, or to refuse to resume services to any applicant or customer on account of their failure to pay delinquent bills owing said utility by such person, whether such bills cover service at the premises sought to be served, or elsewhere within the City. (Ord. 5275, 4-16-07)

B.    Appeals Procedures: Should an aggrieved person wish to appeal the delinquent notice, the following procedures shall be used:

1.    The aggrieved person shall notify the Administrator in writing within ten (10) days of receipt of the delinquency notice to request a review of said notice. The review shall be limited to the following issues:

a.    The existence of the delinquency.

b.    The amount of the delinquency.

c.    The manner in which the delinquency was calculated by the utility.

2.    The water service to the property which is the subject of the appeal shall not be terminated while an appeal is pending pursuant to this Section.

3.    The Administrative Services Administrator shall review the charges and determine the accuracy of the delinquency notice. If the existence of the delinquency or the amount thereof is in error, the Administrative Services Administrator shall correct the error and make the change on the City records. If the manner in which the delinquency is calculated is in error the Administrative Services Administrator shall request the utility to recalculate the charge and then make any resulting changes on the City records. (Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

4.    The Administrative Services Administrator shall, as soon as practicable, notify the aggrieved party in writing of the results of the delinquency review. The aggrieved party shall have ten (10) days following receipt of the notice of the appeal decision to pay any remaining delinquency. Ten (10) days following the appeal decision the Administrator may cut off water service to the property in question if any delinquency remains unpaid. (Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

C.    Termination of Water Service: Any person having received a delinquency notice and not having paid or appealed said delinquency may be subject to having the Administrative Services Administrator cut off water service to the property in question. (Ord. 4065, 5-11-87; Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

D.    Water Service Reinstatement: Should the Administrative Services Administrator cause the water service to be cut off for failure to pay a delinquency pursuant to this Section, such water service will remain cut off until the delinquency plus ten percent (10%) interest is paid, together with the sum of sixty dollars ($60.00) additional for the expense of turning the water off and on. (Ord. 4293, 10-15-90; amd. Ord. 5013, 6-23-03; Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

8-2-2 RATE REDUCTIONS:

A.    One Category: A rate reduction not to exceed one category shall be credited to any nonresidential parcel when acceptable storm water facilities have been installed in excess of those facilities which are required by City, County, State or Federal law, rules or regulations or in excess of facilities required to mitigate identified environmental impacts under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA). The storm water facilities which may be considered to qualify for rate reduction include but are not limited to storm retention, detention and recharge facilities. (Suspended by Ord. 4356, 6-15-92)

B.    Two Categories: A rate reduction not to exceed two (2) categories shall be credited to any nonresidential parcel providing a privately owned and maintained storm water drainage system which drains directly into Lake Washington; provided, that the drainage from the system meets or exceeds the water quality requirements of a permit which has been issued for said system by the State Department of Ecology.

    For any parcel five (5) acres in size or larger on which a portion of the on-site discharges into the City’s surface water utility system and a portion of which discharges directly to Lake Washington via a privately owned and maintained surface water drainage system. The one category rate reduction credit allowed herein shall be prorated as follows: the ownership shall be analyzed to determine the number of acres which drain into the Municipal system and the number of acres which discharge via the private system. That portion of the property which discharges into the Municipal system shall be charged the full service charge as determined by the initial “basic” category. That portion of the property which discharges via the private system shall be credited with a one-category rate reduction. (Suspended by Ord. 4356, 6-15-1992)

C.    Application: To obtain a rate reduction, an application for the reduction must be filed in writing with the Administrator setting forth the category of the property, the constructed facilities, on the property and the reason for the reduction pursuant to subsections A and B above. (Suspended by Ord. 4356, 6-15-1992)

D.    Assessments: No rate reduction shall be applied to an assessment until the Administrator has determined that the facilities which have been installed are functioning properly and fulfill the intent of this Section. If the facility for which the reduction is given should be discontinued or cease to be operated and maintained in a safe and effective manner then the reduction shall be withdrawn.

E.    Credit Adjustment: No credit adjustment can reduce a property assessment below the low intensity category.

F.    Credit For Amount Paid: (Rep. by Ord. 4657, 3-3-1997)

G.    Special Rates: Senior and/or disabled citizens who qualified under RMC 8-4-31.C for low-income rates are eligible for the following monthly rates:

Low-Income Subsidized Rates

2021 Rates

2022 Rates

Qualified prior to August 1, 1994

$3.10

$3.16

Qualified after August 1, 1994 and prior to May 31, 2008, 75% subsidy

$3.87

$3.95

Qualify after May 31, 2008, 50% subsidy

$7.73

$7.88

(Ord. 4461, 7-25-1994; Ord. 4567, 12-11-1995; Ord. 4643, 12-9-1996; Ord. 4881, 12-11-2000; Ord. 5112, 12-20-2004; Ord. 5179, 12-12-2005; Ord. 5235, 11-27-2006; Ord. 5319, 11-26-2007; Ord. 5372, 4-28-2008; Ord. 5568, 11-8-2010; Ord. 5673, 11-5-2012; Ord. 5732, 11-3-14; Ord. 5823, 11-21-16; Ord. 5890, 10-22-18; Ord. 5986, 11-9-20)

8-2-3 DETERMINATION OF CATEGORY OF PROPERTY AND CALCULATION OF CHARGES:

A.    Evaluation Criteria: All properties other than single-family residential properties shall be evaluated using the following criteria to determine the category of the property. All public facilities, Municipal facilities and quasi-municipal facilities shall be rated in their appropriate category.

BASIC CATEGORY CRITERIA

CATEGORY

CRITERIA

High Intensity

Developed with 81 – 100% impervious surfaces.

Medium Intensity

Developed with 51 – 80% impervious surfaces.

Low Intensity

Developed with 0 – 50% impervious surfaces.

Special Class

Gravel pits, fill sites, City streets, public alleys, County, State and Federal highways and properties under construction.

Undeveloped

Lands in a natural state (lands which have been graded and/or been filled preparatory to development pursuant to a special permit are in the special class).

Exempt

Golf course, dedicated, natural open space and properties belonging to City’s Water Works Utility.

B.    Percentage Calculation: To derive the “percentage of impervious surface coverage” the total area of impervious surface coverage of a parcel will be divided by the total parcel area exclusive of public streets and rights-of-way.

C.    Initial Basic Category: The following documents may be used to determine the initial basic category:

1.    King County Assessor’s records.

2.    Records of survey, both public and private.

3.    Plan records or aerial photogrammery.

4.    Field inspection.

D.    Calculations For Charges:

1.    A property which is less than one acre in size and which is developed with a use other than single-family residential will be assessed as follows:

a.    A parcel which is five-tenths (0.5) acres in size or smaller will be charged for one-half (1/2) acre at the rate established for the basic category.

b.    A parcel which is greater than five-tenths (0.5) acres in size but smaller than one acre will be charged for one acre at the rate established for the applicable category.

2.    A parcel which is greater than one (1.0) acre in size and which is developed with a use other than single-family residential will be charged using the formula: (total parcel size) times (rate per acre established for the applicable category). (Ord. 4065, 5-11-1987)

E.    Charges For Surface Water Utility:

1.    The following schedule is hereby adopted as the monthly charges to be paid to the City for surface water utility services:

 

2021 Rates

2022 Rates

Single-family dwelling

$15.45

$15.76

Low intensity, 0.5 acre or less

$38.25 per acre

$39.02 per acre

Medium intensity, 0.5 acre or less

$55.32 per acre

$56.43 per acre

High intensity, 0.5 acre or less

$71.33 per acre

$72.76 per acre

Low intensity, more than 0.5 acre

$76.50 per acre

$78.03 per acre

Medium intensity, more than 0.5 acre

$110.60 per acre

$112.81 per acre

High intensity, more than 0.5 acre

$142.67 per acre

$145.52 per acre

Gravel pits

$153.81 per acre

$156.88 per acre

City streets

$38.35 per acre

$39.12 per acre

County, State, and Federal highways

$22.95 per acre

$23.41 per acre

(Amd. Ord. 4881, 12-11-2000; Ord. 5179, 12-12-2005; Ord. 5235, 11-27-2006; Ord. 5568, 11-8-2010; Ord. 5673, 11-5-2012; Ord. 5732, 11-3-14; Ord. 5823, 11-21-16)

2.    Senior and/or disabled citizens who qualify under RMC 8-4-31.C shall be eligible, upon application, for special rates as detailed in RMC 8-2-2.G. (Ord. 5319, 11-26-2007)

3.    (Rep. by Ord. 4898, 3-19-2001) (Ord. 4436, 2-21-1994; Ord. 4485, 12-5-1994; amd. Ord. 4815, 11-22-1999; Ord. 5890, 10-22-18)

F.    Rate Revenue For Capital Purpose: A portion of the revenue generated from the above rates will be used for storm utility related capital improvement projects and/or debt services for the same as indicated in the adopted budget. Also included in the above rates are applicable State and local taxes. (Ord. 4253, 12-11-1989; Ord. 5986, 11-9-20)

8-2-4 ADJUSTMENT OF CATEGORY DUE TO DEVELOPMENT OR CHANGES:

After the initial assessment of a property, any further development which alters the storm drainage run-off shall result in a re-evaluation of the assessment category. The amended service charge shall become effective upon the date of issuance of a grading permit if necessary, or if not necessary, issuance of a foundation permit for new development or building construction permit for redevelopment.

8-2-5 APPEAL FROM CATEGORY DETERMINATION AND ASSESSMENT:

A.    Appeal: Any property owner who disputes the determination of property category, the area to be charged or the amount of a rate reduction, may file an appeal in accordance with the following procedure:

1.    The appeal petition shall be in writing, addressed to:

Planning/Building/Public
Works Administrator
Municipal Building
1055 South Grady Way
Renton, Washington 98055

2.    The petition shall be filed with the City Clerk in person or via certified or registered mail no later than thirty (30) days after the date of notification of the basis for charges or the initial monthly account billing.

3.    The petition shall include identification of property owner(s), any necessary details of the affected property, a description of existing improvements, and an explanation of the alleged errors or the basis for the appeal.

4.    The petition shall be accompanied or preceded by payment of any disputed charge, so that the account is current.

5.    Upon receipt of the petition, the City Clerk shall check that the appeal was filed within thirty (30) days of the date of the notice of basis for charges or the initial monthly account billing by the Administrative Services Department and confirm that payment of charges is current. The appeal shall then be forwarded to the Administrator. (Ord. 5547, 8-9-10; Ord. 5654, 2-13-12)

6.    The Administrator shall review the appeal and shall notify the petitioner of the results of that review as soon as practicable. The date of mailing of such a notification shall constitute the response date.

7.    Any amendment to service charges, as a result of an appeal process, shall be applied as a credit to billings subsequent to the final appeal decision.

B.    Review Appeal: Any owner who disputes any determination under this Section made by the Administrator through the appeal process may, within thirty (30) days of the date of notification of the appeal finding, request a review appeal by petitioning the City’s Hearing Examiner in writing for a hearing as follows:

1.    Filing of Petition: The review appeal petition shall be filed in person or by certified or registered mail addressed to:

Land Use Hearing Examiner
Municipal Building
1055 South Grady Way
Renton, Washington 98055

2.    Fee: The petition shall be accompanied by payment of a seventy five dollar ($75.00) filing fee.

3.    Explanation: The review appeal shall be on the record that was submitted to the Administrator. The petition shall contain an explanation of the alleged errors in the appeal finding.

4.    Current Charges: Pending final decision, the owner shall pay current charges. Failure to pay current charges shall result in dismissal of the appeal by the Hearing Examiner.

5.    Hearing:

a.    Upon receiving such a petition, the Hearing Examiner shall schedule a hearing within thirty (30) days. Notice of the hearing shall be provided to the petitioner at least ten (10) days prior to the hearing. Following the hearing, a final determination shall be made in writing by the Hearing Examiner and the petitioner so notified within thirty (30) days.

b.    The Hearing Examiner shall affirm the Administrator’s decision unless the examiner finds the Administrator’s decision to have been clearly erroneous. If the decision was clearly erroneous, the Examiner may remand the matter to the Administrator or may recompute the applicable service charge.

c.    Following the Examiner’s decision, any aggrieved party may, within fourteen (14) days after the Examiner’s decision, petition for reconsideration by the Examiner in accordance with RMC 4-8-100G4.

d.    Nothing in this Chapter shall be construed as granting any right of judicial review which did not previously exist in law. The original or reconsideration decision of the Hearing Examiner shall be final and conclusive, unless a writ of review is sought in the Superior Court of King County by an aggrieved party within twenty (20) calendar days of the mailing of the applicable Examiner’s decision. (Ord. 4065, 5-11-87)

8-2-6 SEVERABILITY:

If any provision of this Chapter or its application to any person or property is held invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, the remainder of the Chapter or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected. (Ord. 4065, 5-11-87)

8-2-7 SURFACE WATER SYSTEM DEVELOPMENT CHARGE:

See RMC 4-1-180I3. (Amd. Ord. 4723, 5-11-98)