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New Castle County Council approves new sewer fee for next fiscal year

Courtesy of New Castle County government

New Castle County residents will not see an increase in taxes next fiscal year—but sewer customers will have to pay a new fee. 

County Council unanimously passed the new sewer fee this week. It’s a fixed fee based on the size of a property’s meter, or the size and characteristics of the parcel. It’ll be in addition to the costs based on usage that County sewer customers already pay. 

County Executive Matt Meyer announced the new fee last month along with his budget proposal, which does not include a property tax increase. Meyer said while the County’s general reserve fund has stayed strong over the past few years, the sewer fund has not. 

“Our sewer fund has seen a decrease in reserve levels, reflecting the maintenance needs of an aging infrastructure,” he said. 

Meyer said the new fee structure will be “similar to how most utilities work."

The new fee is expected to produce more than $7 million in revenue each year. County officials say it’ll amount to about $24 a year per residential household. It will not apply to residents receiving age- or disability-related property tax exemptions. 

Council approved the fee with no opposition or discussion at its Tuesday meeting, and no members of the public commented on it. 

It goes into effect July 1. 

Sophia Schmidt is a Delaware native. She comes to Delaware Public Media from NPR’s Weekend Edition in Washington, DC, where she produced arts, politics, science and culture interviews. She previously wrote about education and environment for The Berkshire Eagle in Pittsfield, MA. She graduated from Williams College, where she studied environmental policy and biology, and covered environmental events and local renewable energy for the college paper.
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