After a Public Hearing on May 10, 2005, and effective January 26, 2006, the Board of County Commissioners approved Ordinance No. 06-05-401, adopting a Solid Waste Benefit Charge (also known as a System Benefit Charge or "SBC"). Ordinance 08-13-489, approved on May 21, 2008, adopted rates for FY09 (July 2008- June 2009), FY10 (July 2009- June 2010) and FY11 (July 2010- June 2011). The definitions of multi-family residential buildings and single family dwelling units were further clarified in Ordinance 9-10-514, approved April 28,2009.
The purpose of the charge is to pay a portion of the reasonably anticipated capital costs and operating costs for the disposal of solid waste. The budget includes funding for costs associated with recycling collections programs and waste disposal. It is anticipated that the recycling initiatives partially funded by this change, particularly the new residential single-stream recycling program, will greatly increase the amount of material recycled by diverting it from disposal and helping Frederick County move toward its ultimate waste diversion goal of 60%.
The charge is applied countywide, including within the municipalities. The charges are for both residential and non-residential properties. All information for the assessment of a property is based on the Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation’s (SDAT) records. Residential rates are applied per dwelling unit for both single family and multi-family properties. Non-residential rates are applied to properties with improvement values greater than $5,000 and the number of billing units is based on several factors including the Bureau of Public Roads Use Codes (BPRUC) that establishes the primary use of the property, structure area and the land use code.
The establishment of this charge, in addition to the current Landfill Tipping Fees, allows the Department of Solid Waste to function as a true enterprise fund within the County government. Enterprise funds are fully self-sustaining through charges and fees and receive no general fund tax dollars.
This charge is an annual charge to be included on the County’s taxes and fees bill. The bill will show the assigned Waste Generator Category (Single Family or Multi-family for residential and Low, Medium low, Medium, Medium high or High for non-residential), the number of billing units and the approved rate per billing unit for the assigned generator category.
Within the yearly designated appeals period, the property owner or duly authorized agent of a non-residential property may file an appeal to either the Generator Category or number of billing units. County tax bills are sent out in July of each year: the appeals period remains open through September, and is valid for requests regarding the current year’s bill only.