Stacey Isaac Berahzer is a Senior Project Director for the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina, and works from a satellite office in Georgia.

Stormwater utilities are an interesting finance tool for addressing nonpoint sources of water pollution, flooding etc. They are enterprise funds within a local government, which means that they are supposed to be self-sufficient. Getting a stormwater utility approved in a community can be controversial, to say the least. But, it has been proven time and time again that one key to success is a proper public vetting process, incorporating all the relevant stakeholders. Georgia boasts some examples of how cutting-corners in the initiating of a utility can be the demise of the whole affair. But, the state can also claim some very well-run utilities that have managed public expectations on the “level of service” practical with the utility fees. Continue reading