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Rockville Connect
Change in Billing for City Refuse Services
IMPORTANT NOTICE
All refuse customers will soon receive a refuse bill for the service period ending in June 2016.
This special bill is necessary because all annual refuse bills are now for the period July 1 through June 30 of each year and collected on your property tax bill.  This change was effective July 1, 2016 necessitating this one time adjusted bill to bring all payments current through June 30, 2016.  If you have any questions please call the City of Rockville's Utility Billing Office at 240-314-8420.

Effective July 1, 2016, charges for City of Rockville residential refuse services will appear on the Montgomery County tax bill. This is a change in billing practice only.

When was the change approved?
The Mayor and Council approved the billing change on May 2, 2016. Prior to approval, the Mayor and Council held a public hearing and received oral and written testimony on the change from Feb. 22 – April 25, 2016.

Why was the change made?
This change will result in a more efficient, lower cost refuse billing process. The efficiency savings from the change should help to slow any future rate increases.

Is the city’s refuse pickup service changing?
No, there will be no changes in refuse service. This change only impacts the billing for the service.

What will this mean for the rate I pay for refuse service?
The annual refuse charge is the same under this new billing method as it would have been under the old method. The annual refuse service charge for Fiscal Year 2017, which runs June 30, 2016-July 1, 2017, is $424 per residential property. Because this billing method costs less than the current method, future rate increases will be lower under this method than they would have been under the old method.

Why don’t you bill my water and sewer service on the property tax bill?
The water and sewer charges are based on actual metered usage, and therefore vary by residential property, which makes it unsuitable for property tax bills. The annual refuse charge, on the other hand, is a flat rate charge for a service billed to all residential properties in the city, with the exception of certain multifamily home communities that receive refuse service through a private contractor. Because the rate is the same for all residential properties, like the stormwater management fee and the residential property tax rate, this charge can be included as a separate line item on the residential property tax bill.

Will I continue to receive a bill from the city?
If you are a city water customer, you will continue to receive a bill for water and sewer service, but the refuse charge will no longer appear on your bill. If you are a Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) water customer, you will no longer receive a utility bill from the City of Rockville.

How and when will I pay for the city’s refuse service?
You will pay for your refuse service at the same time as you pay your property taxes. Payments can be made in two installments by Sept. 30 and Dec. 31.

Where will I be able to find the charge for refuse services?
The city’s charge for refuse services will appear as a line item on the property tax bill you will receive from Montgomery County. This bill is mailed in July, and can be accessed at any time at https://www2.montgomerycountymd.gov/realPropertyTax/Default.aspx

Who do I call if I see a problem or have a question concerning the refuse charge on the Montgomery County tax bill?
Please call the city’s Utility Billing Division at 240-314-8420 with any questions regarding your charge for refuse services.

Does putting the refuse charge on the property tax bill mean that what I pay for refuse is now a tax and not a fee for service?
No, the refuse charge is still a fee for service, not a tax.

Now that the charge appears on the tax bill, can I deduct the refuse charge when I prepare my tax return?
Generally, you will deduct the amount reported to you by your mortgage or escrow company on tax Form 1098. If you have any tax questions in this regard, you should consult with your attorney or tax preparer.

How do other municipalities charge for refuse service?
Both the City of Gaithersburg and Montgomery County include their refuse service charge on their property tax bills.