The city of Nampa is holding a series of open houses to educate the public about an upcoming $165 million sewer bond.The update is a federal requirement. So the question isn't whether it will happen but how voters will pay for it. If the bond does not pass the city says sewer rates will almost double.
"I think one of the most important thing people need to be aware of whether they vote yes or no, we are going to have a rate increase," said Debbie Kling, Mayor of Nampa
Nampa needs to make updates to their sewage system, and the changes are not going to be cheap. Voters will be able to weigh in on the issue in the May 15th election. If voters vote yes on the 165 million dollar bond sewage customers will see roughly a 17% rate increase through 2025. If the bond doesn't pass, the city will be forced to fund the upgrades itself, and sewage rates will jump 93 percent in one year.
State and federal regulations are requiring all cities in the Treasure Valley to make upgrades to their wastewater treatment systems. The issue is phosphorus levels. Nampa's level currently sits at five milligrams per liter. To meet Environment of Protection Agency requirement that number needs to be down to .5 by 2021 and .1 by 2026. If the city misses those deadlines, it will have to pay major fines. If the city doesn't hit its 2021 goal, they will be fined up to $100,000 a day.