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Utilities Commission Adopts New Water System Development Charges (SDC)

Post Date:02/13/2019 11:17 am

Growth in our community creates additional demands on our water system. The City of Hillsboro Water Department collects Water System Development Charges (SDCs) to ensure new growth pays their equable share to fund water system expansions.

Water SDC fees are a one-time charge for either new water meter connections, or increased usage for meters three inches or larger. SDC fees are not charged for new customers activating service at an existing meter where the SDC fee was previously assessed.

On February 12, 2019, the City of Hillsboro Utilities Commission adopted new Water System Development Charges (SDCs). The new Water SDCs will be effective April 1, 2019. Approval came after the Utilities Commission considered public input and then voted at a public hearing held on February 12, 2019. The adjustment ensures new connections to the water system pay their equitable share to fund water system expansions. 

For a typical single-family residential connection inside the City of Hillsboro, Water SDCs will increase from $8,634 to $10,300, for example. This amount is 91 percent of the maximum allowable amount permissible under the City’s 2014 adopted methodology ($11,309, including indexing adjustments).

2019 Adopted Water SDC Fees
Effective April 1, 2019

Water Meter Size

City of Hillsboro Retail Customers

Upper System Retail Customers

City of Cornelius — Wholesale Customer*

City of Gaston and LA Water Co-Op — Wholesale Customer*

5/8 inch





3/4 inch





1 inch**





1-1/2 inch





2 inch





3 inch and larger

Water SDCs are based on estimated average day and maximum day demands expressed in 5/8 inch and 3/4 inch water meter equivalents


Chart notes:
  • In addition to Water SDCs, customers will be charged an administration fee for processing.
  • The Water SDCs adopted in 2018 are about 80 percent of the maximum allowed under methodology mandated by State law. The adopted 2019 Water SDCs continue to phase in the rate to about 91 percent of the maximum.
  • * Wholesale customers may require payment of local SDCs in addition to the wholesale SDCs charged by the City of Hillsboro.
  • ** Customers who are upsizing a residential water meter from 5/8 inch by 3/4 inch to 1 inch solely for fire service needs will continue to pay the “non-fire” 5/8 inch by 3/4 inch fee.

Effective immediately, the following protocols apply:

  • Building permit applications submitted by the close of business, Friday, March 29, 2019, will be subject to the current 2018 charges, provided fees are paid and the building permit is picked up on or before Monday, September 30, 2019.
  • For permits picked up and paid starting Tuesday, October 1, 2019, the SDC fees would be recalculated at 2019 Water SDC rates.
  • Building permit applications submitted on or after April 1, 2019, will be subject to the 2019 SDCs.

Information on what Water SDCs fund, how they are calculated, and their history is posted on the dedicated Water SDC webpage.

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