Hazen and Sawyer Awarded Stormwater Utility Analysis
City of Reading Considers Forming New Utility
(NEW YORK, NY – March 6, 2009) – The City of Reading, Pennsylvania, is considering the formation of a stormwater utility and has awarded Hazen and Sawyer a contract for the Storm Water Utility Analysis.
New to Pennsylvania, stormwater utilities have previously been implemented successfully in many municipalities throughout the United States. The new utility would likely benefit of the City of Reading by providing dedicated funds for stormwater system maintenance and improvement without impacting the City’s General Fund.
Under the project, Hazen and Sawyer will determine the costs and revenue requirements of the utility, advise the City as to institutional issues concerning the utility’s structure, and develop a stormwater utility ordinance for enforcement of rules and regulations. The ordinance will also define Use of Funds, Rate Methodology, and the Appeals Process. Since this new utility will involve a new rate program for the City, the project will also include a public relations program, making the public fully aware of the program, the rates to be charged, and the program’s benefits.
The Berks County Stormwater Management Plan (BCSMP), developed in accordance with the requirements of Pennsylvania Stormwater Management Act 167 of 1978, will be an important consideration in evaluating the establishment of the new stormwater utility. The City of Reading is located in the Schuykill River Watershed, for which the SMP was specifically developed. The main objective of an SMP is to control stormwater runoff on a watershed-wide basis rather than on a site-by-site basis, taking into account how development in any part of the watershed will affect stormwater runoff in all other parts of the watershed. Understanding the SMP for the entire Schuykill watershed will facilitate assessment as to the cause and effect of any City action as it relates to the Plan.
Hazen and Sawyer has completed similar projects for many municipalities on the East Coast between New York and Miami, including seven stormwater utility analyses in Florida and the innovative design of the Staten Island Bluebelt Project.
For more than half a century, Hazen and Sawyer has focused on two things: providing safe drinking water and controlling water pollution. Our range of services encompasses the planning, design, and construction management of water and wastewater-related projects – from clean water treatment, storage, and distribution to wastewater collection and treatment. Since our founding in 1951, we have grown in size to over 740 employees in 25 offices.