Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District

Ohio

RFC has a long history of working with the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District (District) which serves the Cleveland metropolitan area.  In the past, RFC has provided alternative rate structure analyses and comprehensive financial planning services dating as far back as 2005.

Our recent work with the District has been focused on billing, customer service, data and software to support the implementation of the District’s impervious area fee and the District’s consideration of changes to its billing arrangements with third-party provider Cleveland Water Department. In March of 2012, RFC began an engagement with the District on a set of data management, policy development, and financial analysis tasks. The primary effort was focused on building a billing database and related functionality to support the District’s stormwater management program, which began billing in January 2013. The billing database supports communication with Cleveland Water Department, whose customer information system is Oracle Customer Care and Billing (CC&B). During the project, the RFC team enhanced the database to provide for ongoing maintenance of about 400,000 stormwater accounts, and numerous customer service and program reporting functions. RFC led a process to refine, update, and expand stormwater billing and program policies, partly driven by the results of several lawsuits, against which the District has successfully defended.

The policy task involved internal stakeholder consultation and participation. In response to these changes, RFC prepared a new financial plan, updated from its original stormwater plan, which incorporates refinements to the District’s stormwater program focus, and allows for input on actual collected revenue to inform future revenue forecasting.

As part of the engagement, RFC worked with staff to update the stormwater financial plan that RFC had developed under a previous engagement in 2008 as part of the Regional Stormwater Management Program implementation project as a subcontractor to AMEC. Finally, recent work also includes RFC’s analysis of several billing alternatives the District could consider other than its arrangement with Cleveland Water.

RFC is currently a subcontractor to URS under a District general engineering services contract to provide additional billing and data support. The contract is on hold as the District wrestles with a court order that halted stormwater billing.

Previous engagements, primarily rate and financial related include:

2005: Analysis of alternative revenue structuresto fund the District’s wet weather management program.

2006: Comprehensive financial plan for the five-year period 2007 through 2011. The public outreach effort will comprise council briefings and interactions, information for the general public, and targeted outreach to affected customers.

2008: Financial plan and rate structure to support the creation of a Regional Stormwater Management Program.  

2010: Comprehensive cost of service and rate study. The results of this analysis produced a five-year forecast of rates for the years 2012-2016.