City of Barrie launches consultation on how stormwater management is funded

Virtual public information meeting to take place on June 3

courtesy City of Barrie

The City of Barrie is considering changing the way stormwater management is funded and is looking for feedback from residents and businesses. A virtual public information meeting will take place on June 3 from 7 to 9 p.m. You must register in advance at buildingbarrie.ca/stormwater-climate-action-fund.

Stormwater management includes manholes, catch basins, storm sewers, stormwater management ponds, creeks and more. This system requires maintenance and upgrading, which is costly. When it rains or when snow melts from your roof or driveway, the water that does not soak into the ground makes its way through the City’s stormwater management system.

Climate change will increase rainfall intensities that can lead to costly flooding, increased erosion and negative impacts on natural water bodies. More water through our stormwater system means more maintenance and upgrades—which is why a new funding model is being explored.

Currently, Barrie’s stormwater program is funded through municipal taxes. The current proposal is to move stormwater funding from the taxes to a new funding model—which is something many municipalities have done. This new model will be based on average impervious area for a given residential property type (i.e. detached homes vs. condominiums) and measured impervious areas for non-residential properties (e.g., commercial, institutional and industrial). An impervious area is a hard surface such as concrete, asphalt or rooftops that do not absorb water.

The information meeting on June 3 is the first stage of public consultation on this project. More engagement opportunities will be available over the year as the project progresses. Visit buildingbarrie.ca/stormwater-climate-action-fund for more information and to sign up for project updates.