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How is my fee calculated?

The fee is based on how much hard surface is on the property.

Those who use the storm drainage system the most pay the most. All Charlotte-Mecklenburg property owners who have impervious surfaces (such as roofs, driveways, parking lots) pay the storm water fee.  Impervious surfaces do not absorb rainfall. The more impervious surface, the more storm water runoff flows from that property into our culverts and streams. The more runoff, the more demand on our drainage system.

Why isn't the fee based on tax value?

Impervious surface is not the same as tax value. A high-rise building may have the same property tax value as a shopping mall. However, the shopping center produces more storm water runoff because of the size of its parking lots and rooftop. So the shopping center will pay a higher storm water fee than the high rise.

Your storm water fee is not based on whether you have water or sewer service, or whether you have storm water pipes on your property. It is based on the impervious surface on your property.

   Impervious surface 

Aerial photo of rooftops     How is the size of impervious area determined?
Aerial photos are taken during the winter and early spring when leaves have fallen off the trees. The aerial photo shows the impervious surface on each property.

Computer software is used to draw around the edges of the hard surfaces shown on the photo to calculate the square footage of impervious surface on each parcel.

Frequently asked questions about storm water rates and billing tiers

The Storm Water fee is shown on your monthly Charlotte-Mecklenburg City/County Services bill (water bill.)  Residents who have their own well or septic system, or whose water service is not provided by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utility Department are considered "storm water only" accounts and are billed twice a year.