In 2014, the City of Stanwood selected Financial Consulting Solutions Group, Inc. (FCS Group) to conduct a financial study for its Stormwater utility. This financial study covered the following general topics:
- Analysis of utility revenue sufficiency in meeting the planned level of service
- Development of an equitable utility rate structure imposed monthly on properties within the utility’s service area
- Identification of guiding fiscal and rate policies
- Update and revision of the utility’s general facilities charge (i.e, "connection charge") imposed on new development and redeveloped properties
The rate study was scheduled to be completed in 2015 at the same time as the first draft of the Stormwater Master Plan. The Stormwater Plan adopts a recommended level of service for the Stormwater utility and includes definable operating, administrative, and capital costs which are different from the utility’s existing level of service and budget. The city council will consider increasing stormwater connection fees to ensure new development pays a proportionate share of the cost to build the existing system funded by rate payers.
The city council may discuss increasing stormwater (drainage) rates as recommended in the rate study in order to fund the levels of service recommended the Master Plan.