Austin's drainage charge is assessed on utility bills and pays for solutions to flooding, erosion and water pollution.
The Watershed Protection Department is increasing its drainage charge by 3.2% in November 2023 for the first time since 2015 to support the rising cost of service for its operations. For a typical single-family home, the charge will increase from $11.80 per month to $12.17 per month. The Austin City Council approves the drainage charge rate as part of the budget process. The Austin City Council approved the Fiscal Year 2024 budget in August 2023. The $5.5 billion budget significantly invests in essential City services and centers on Mayor and Council priorities.
Drainage Charge Calculation
The drainage charge is calculated individually for each property, based on the amount and percent of impervious cover. Less impervious cover means a lower charge.
What is impervious cover? It includes:
Driveways, paved and unpaved
Parking lots, paved and unpaved
Other surfaces that do not absorb rainfall.
Impervious cover has a significant impact on stormwater. It increases the amount and speed of stormwater. It also increases the amount of pollutants in stormwater. To find out more about how impervious cover contributes to problems such as flooding, watch the video farther down the page.
What is My Impervious Cover?
Use the Find My Drainage Charge tool to see the impervious cover on your property. The Find My Drainage Charge tool works best with Internet Explorer 9 or higher, Firefox, Google Chrome or Safari.
If you collect rain water on your property, you may be eligible for a discount on your drainage charge. The discount is available to both residential and commercial properties. However, you must exceed development requirements to be eligible. Find out more about the Stormwater Management Discount.
Video: Pervious vs. Impervious Cover
Estimate Your Drainage Charge
If you are planning changes to the impervious cover at your property, you can use this calculator to estimate your drainage charge.