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Levying for Stormwater

The change in the season has brought with it wet weather, and planning to manage storm water runoff in each of the six towns within the Warrumbungle shire is also under way. Focusing on the impacts of stormwater runoff during major wet weather events, the Warrumbungle Stormwater Plan will target localised flooding and the risk of houses being inundated.

 

Recent wet weather events indicate the current stormwater infrastructure in some Warrumbungle townships is not coping during a major storm. To fund upgrades in stormwater infrastructure, property owners will be co-contributing a small levy. 

 

An annual storm water levy of $25 per residential assessment, and a business assessment rate starting from $25, will contribute towards generating funds to manage stormwater.  This small levy will raise around $105,000 a year. 

 

General Manager Steve Loane recognizes the need for improving storm water infrastructure.

 

“There are quite a few storm water issues in our communities and we have been slow in putting this levy in place. Most rural and regional Councils have had this levy for the past 10 years,” commented Mr Loane.

 

The flat terrain in towns like Baradine and Binnaway contributes towards water drainage issues. The steeper slopes of Dunedoo also require storm water infrastructure upgrades, and will be included in a Storm Water Plan to be developed for the communities across the Warrumbungle shire.

 

“The $25 is a mandatory amount per rates assessment, except for some businesses.  We have previously never had a budget for stormwater fixes until now. Funds raised by the levy will be used for managing stormwater, and for seeking additional funding from state and federal government grant programs.”

 

Most infrastructure grant funding programs now require a co-contribution from the community, industry and/or other tiers of government.

 

The Storm Water Plan may include Water Sensitive Urban Design, featuring linkages with natural waterways and vegetated storm water infrastructure such as wetlands or rain gardens.

 

Roberts Street in Coonabarabran features a rain garden where storm water flow is reduced and filtered prior to flowing into the Castlereagh River, reducing potential damage to town streets and gutters, improving water quality and beautifying the banks of the Castlereagh River.

 

 “There is a wealth of research undertaken on handling storm water.  Ensuring storm water infrastructure design manages flood risk, be safe for the environment and support development in Warrumbungle communities is integral to the Warrumbungle Storm Water Plan.”

 

Further detail on managing storm water, including a Senate Committee Inquiry on National Storm Water Management, can be obtained by visiting the Storm Water Australia website at www.stormwater.asn.au .

Last Updated: 04 Aug 2016

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