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Clean Water Services' Budget Committee to Review Fiscal Year 2020-21 Budget

May 27, 2020

Durham Water Resource Recovery FacilityDue to the financial stress many families and businesses are feeling from the COVID-19 pandemic, Clean Water Services (CWS) is recommending sanitary sewer and surface water management rates remain at their current levels through 2020. Rates and fees will be reevaluated in December 2020 and increases may occur based on the economic recovery of our region. We will manage our budget by prioritizing and sequencing planned capital and operating investments.

Rates support our work in protecting water resources as we look beyond this pandemic and keep up with changing needs. This requires additional investments in aging infrastructure, ensuring our long-term water supply and meeting stricter federal and state pollution control rules. 

"The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically and abruptly changed the way we live and work. The slowing economy is bringing about economic hardships that few in our community could have anticipated," said CEO Diane Taniguchi-Dennis. "Although the sudden impact of this downturn is unprecedented, CWS has a long history of being practical and pragmatic in financial planning that will allow us to navigate this challenge. We will continue to be deliberate and measured with our investments, as well as forward-thinking and proactive in our financial planning, while doing our part for the economic recovery in the region."

The Budget Committee is comprised of five citizens and the five members of Clean Water Services' Board of Directors and will meet on Friday, June 5 to consider the proposed Fiscal Year 2020-21 budget (PDF, 4.5MB), which funds CWS operations and $87.7 million of investments to protect public health, the environment and clean water in the Tualatin River Watershed. 

In an effort to better serve the community during COVID-19, CWS has adjusted this year’s process. The CWS Budget Committee meeting will be broadcast live on Washington County's YouTube channel. The public is welcomed to submit questions or comments prior to the budget hearing and no later than June 3, 2020 by emailing Kathy Leader.

Clean Water Services' Proposed Fiscal Year 2020-21 Budget includes the following major components: $82.1 million for operating expenses; $87.7 million for capital construction; and $21.7 million for debt service on bonds that help pay for past, current and planned water infrastructure system investments. Primary revenues include $150.2 million from sewer and surface water rates and $18 million from System Development Charges (SDCs). SDCs are one-time charges for connecting to the public sewer and stormwater system. 

Capital construction is funded by rates, SDCs and bond proceeds. The proposed capital budget includes $87.7 million to upgrade, replace and expand aging infrastructure, and improve water quality in the Tualatin River and its tributaries. Major investments include:

  • $44.7 million to upgrade and expand Clean Water Services' four water resource recovery facilities and 43 sewage pump stations
  • $20.4 million to expand, repair or replace the sanitary sewer collection system
  • $8.5 million to restore flow to the Tualatin River and its tributaries and plant large-scale stream and wetland restoration projects to shade the water, control erosion and filter pollutants
  • $6.5 million to build stormwater projects to control pollution and improve local drainage and replace equipment that helps protect water quality in local streams and the Tualatin River

The Budget Committee's recommendation will be forwarded to the Board of Directors for consideration at a Public Hearing scheduled for Tuesday, June 23, at 6:30 pm at the Public Services Building, 155 N. First Avenue in Hillsboro. This meeting will also be broadcast live. Learn more about the proposed budget at cleanwaterservices.org/budget. Clean Water Services' Board of Directors sets the regional portion of the sanitary sewer rate and the SWM rate for urban Washington County customers which is shared proportionally between Clean Water Services and its member cities.

For more than 50 years, Clean Water Services has worked to protect public health, while enhancing the natural environment. Combining science and nature, we clean water and return it to the Tualatin River, so it can be used again. More than 600,000 customers enjoy clean water and healthy rivers and streams as a result of our innovative water management solutions, drainage management, water-quality and stream-enhancement projects, habitat protection and more.

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Contacts

Mark Jockers
Government & Public Affairs Director
Clean Water Services
503.681.4450 (o)
503.701.4293 (m)
jockersm@cleanwaterservices.org

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