Water & Stormwater - Administrator's Top Initiatives
James City County (JCC) has long been a leader in stormwater management among Virginia counties, as J4C learned from a presentation in March 2013. The County demonstrated proactive commitment by establishing a stormwater utility and fee in 2007. J4C supported this initiative. But the repeal of the fee the following year has made continuing progress in this area difficult. Now, County Administrator Bryan Hill, has declared Water and Stormwater Management as the top two strategic initiatives the County needs to address.
According to presentations at the Supervisor’s Budget Retreat on January 31, 2015, the County faces several challenges in this area.
- County revenues have been essentially flat since 2010 and look to remain so into the foreseeable future.
- Expenses for stormwater management are steadily increasing due to population increases and expanded regulatory requirements.
- JCC has filled this funding gap for several years by drawing down its reserves.
- Mr. Hill, described this as deficit spending and stated the practice is unsustainable.
Mr. Hill suggested the Supervisors join surrounding localities in establishing a dedicated funding stream for handling stormwater management, as the County has done for water and sewer needs. J4C has supported such a position for several years. A similar stance was presented in the recent Evaluation of the Neighborhood Drainage Program, prepared by JCC’s Stormwater Program Advisory Committee.