Environmental Fee FAQs

 

What is this fee?
The Federal and State Environmental Mandate Compliance Fee was established to fund environmental mandates that improve air quality, reduce stormwater pollution and insure compliance with other public health related programs.

 

When was this approved?
With the approval from the Mesa City Council in June of 2006, the City of Mesa adopted Resolution number 8751 establishing the Federal Environmental Compliance Fee.

In May of 2014, City of Mesa Resolution number 10459 was adopted increasing the fee from $5.38 to $7.32. The fee was increased to accomplish full cost recovery for eligible Federal and State environmental mandates. The new fee will be appearing in utility bills after July 2014.  

 

Why is this fee needed now?
Mesa, like other cities, had traditionally managed environmental mandates with General Fund Revenues.  Unfunded Federal and State mandates require the City to manage environmental issues in ways that protect and/or improve water and air quality and that address other public health issues.   

 

Do other cities have this type of fee?
Most of Arizona's large cities have to comply with the same Federal and State mandates and use various approaches to fund them.

 

Will this fee result in a reduction of my property taxes?
No.

 

When was this fee started?
This fee took effect in January 2007.

 

How much is this fee?
Effective July 1, 2014 the fee is $7.32 per month.

 

How is the fee rate determined?
The fee is a flat rate and each utility customer regardless of water use, property value, or the type of account, pays the same amount.

 

Will this fee be increased over time or without notice?
The current fee has been established to fully recover the costs of the Federal and State regulatory mandates.  Federal and State environmental regulations change and increased regulation may necessitate an increase to the fee.  Any future changes to this fee will have to be approved by City Council.

 

What is the money used for?
The money from the Federal and State Environmental Mandate Compliance Fee is used to fund the following programs:

  • Stormdrain maintenance (infrastructure repairs and cleaning)
  • Stormwater sampling (monitor contaminants in stormwater)
  • Retention basin maintenance (city-owned facilities)
  • Street sweeping
  • Fuel storage tank monitoring and maintenance
  • Air Quality programs such as,
    • PM-10 (Dust) stabilization (city-owned vacant lots and shoulders)
    • Inspections of construction sites for adherence to dust control requirements
    • Indoor air quality in city-owned facilities such as libraries, museums and other public buildings
    • Inspections of construction and industrial sites (public and private)
  • Hazardous Materials/Waste management to include:
    • The evaluation and abatement of asbestos and lead-based paint at all city-owned public facilities
    • Hazardous materials response and clean-up of illegal dumping and other hazardous waste spills in all public areas served by the City of Mesa.
    • Meeting Federal and State regulations outlined for all city-owned underground and above ground fuel storage tanks.
  • Administration and public education
  • Other environmental and public health programs.

 

Will this fee be used to fund the maintenance of private drainage easements and retention basins or to correct private drainage issues?
No.  This fee is paid by all utility customers, including County island residents and Magma and is to fund City programs.  It would be unfair for the City to spend more money on private property issues than on the common areas available to the general public.

 

I live in a county island or Magma customer service area; why am I being charged the fee?
As a customer receiving City of Mesa services, you benefit from the environmental programs and services funded by this fee.

 

I have been complaining to the City about drainage issues on or near my property for a long time and nothing gets done.  Will this fee address this problem now?
Many drainage complaints that the City receives are for problems on private property that the City has no authority to address.  The existence of this fee will not change that.

 

Since part of this fee covers stormwater, will I still be charged if it does not rain?
Yes. Even in dry weather, the City must continue regular maintenance and repair of the storm drain system, keep pollution out of the system, and educate the public on stormwater quality issues.  We need to be prepared for when it does rain. The stormwater system is still there whether it rains or not.

 

How will this fee be billed?
The fee will be included in your monthly City of Mesa utility bill (either solid waste, water, electric, or gas)

 

Why not provide this fee in a bill separate from my utility bill?
It is less costly to attach this fee to an existing utility bill than to mail out separate bills.

 

If I am only paying a bill for any period shorter or longer than a full month, will my fee be prorated?
Yes, there will be situations where the City prorates utility bills.  In these cases, the Federal and State Environmental Mandate Compliance fee will also be prorated.

 

Who do I contact with billing questions?
Contact the Customer Service Operations Call Center at 480-644-2221.

 

Who do I contact for more information about the fee and what it is used for?
Contact the Environmental Programs Department at 480-644-3599