AUGUSTA — If you’re looking in your mailbox for an insert that will tell you how much you’ll pay for the stormwater fee next month, you won’t find it.
“The mailers… when that conversation occurred, the billing database wasn’t far enough developed to do a mail merge on all 80,000 accounts,” Engineering Manager Wes Byne said.
Instead of a detailed mailer about your stormwater bill, engineers created a tool on the city’s GIS map.
You can look at the GSI map here.
Just type in your address, click identify, click your property on the map and then scroll through on the left to find your amount.
We found that Georgia State Floral Distributors will have to pay $512 a month.
Because of its large buildings and parking lots, First Baptist Church of Augusta will have to pay nearly $1,400 a month for the stormwater fee.
Church officials tell us that they do have concerns about the monthly fee and that they will be attending meetings next week to let city leaders know.
Director of Engineering Abie Ladson says businesses shouldn’t be shocked about the amounts because his department has spent the last few years letting the larger businesses know about the fee.
“I think, some of the ones like a church with $1,400, I think they kind of probably knew prior to the GIS,” Ladson said.
But if businesses think that their fee is too high, they can appeal it.
“It’s going to be very simple, tell us who you are, where your property is, and what is the basis for your appeal?” Byne said.
Once again, city officials say the monthly fee is needed to fix stormwater problems.
“An example is Patterson Bridge Road, we have a sink hole out there right now and we possibly have to close the bridge,” Ladson said.
Engineers say that the billing database is being updated, so there may be changes to fees.
You can get credits for having a storm water system in place.
The credit manual can be found here.