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Guidelines for Water Main Extensions
Neighborhoods within the city of Jacksonville interested in extending a JEA water main into their neighborhood may do so by following a special assessment process. In accordance with the City of Jacksonville's Neighborhood Assessment Program Ordinance #2019-321-E, the program provides a means for neighborhoods to finance such projects. The guidelines for this process are shown below.
For More Information About the Program:
- Read frequently asked questions about water main extensions
- Learn more about the Neighborhood Assessment Program
- Call JEA Project Outreach: (904) 665-7500
Neighborhood Assessment Program General Guidelines
When deciding on the Neighborhood Assessment Program, please consider the following:
- This program is currently available only in the city of Jacksonville, not including the other municipalities located in Duval County or in other counties where JEA provides electric or water service. Other municipalities would need to adopt a separate
special assessment option for their jurisdictions.
- Two-thirds of the property owners within a neighborhood must agree to the program.
- One hundred percent of the property owners within the neighborhood will be assessed a pro rata portion of the total cost of the project, if approved by the governing body - currently limited to the City of Jacksonville.
- One neighborhood representative is responsible for coordinating participants.
Neighborhood Assessment Program Water Main Extension Guidelines
- An interested neighborhood selects a neighborhood representative and outlines the project limits for a prospective water main extension project. A neighborhood representative must contact JEA to review the project boundary from a system feasibility standpoint.
- JEA will provide a “preliminary study” and cost estimate and define preliminary project boundaries considering elements of system design and installation. There will be estimated costs per unit (typically per lot or parcel) for all construction costs including the water main extension. A project boundary defines the neighborhood where all impacted customers are located. The boundaries and preliminary costs will be given to the neighborhood representative.
- The neighborhood representative will be responsible for pursuing further interest in the project. Once the neighborhood has general sufficient interest to achieve 2/3 participation, JEA will prepare a NAP estimate and provide a more descriptive petition. When the neighborhood has 2/3 agreement to the project via signed petitions, the petition will be submitted to JEA. Submittal of the petition will include a petition fee (currently $10 per lot, parcel or other unit of property), costs to advertise a public hearing to be calculated by the City’s Legislative Services, and reimbursement to JEA for any cost of estimates prepared by other utilities. The petition fees and advertisement fees should be made payable to Duval County Tax Collector.
- The NAP estimate will include costs to install the water main located within the right of way for each property or lot of record. The costs do not include the costs for connection of individual water service. See also FAQ 4.
- The NAP costs for the basic water main installation (line in the public right of way) will be divided by the total number of benefiting properties to arrive at a cost per unit. The property owners then have another opportunity to review and agree with the NAP costs and confirm their willingness to participate by signing a petition form for the NAP costs per unit.
- Equipment locations for water meter and/or other equipment may be required from property owners. Generally, the water meter will be placed within 5 feet of the property line.
- Where not possible or practical, easements for such equipment will be required for the project to go forward. The projects anticipate that easements will be donated for use by JEA necessary for the project construction. In the event any easements must be purchased, the costs of such land rights acquisition will become a part of the overall project cost to be divided on a per unit basis. Easements will need to be sufficient to provide for all water services as they relate to project construction.
- The City and JEA will require customers who complete a petition to agree to connect their service to their individual structures (these are the lines running from the street to individual homes or structures). Each owner connecting will have the option to include financing individual connection costs as a separate part of their assessment if the work is performed by a licensed plumber. A separate budget amount to cover financing individual service connections will be provided with the NAP estimate.
- Financing is not available for internal dwelling or structure plumbing upgrades to accommodate a connection.
- Cost estimates and actual work for individual water service connections are the responsibility of individual property owners. The neighborhood representative may work with other neighborhood property owners to obtain cost estimates from private plumbers to price and actually connect services. Various property owners may choose to use one or more plumbers to do this work, with the decision and work directed by individual owners.
- Once a neighborhood collects the required 2/3 participation based on the NAP cost estimates, the petition requesting a special assessment will be filed as a formal ordinance with the City of Jacksonville’s legislative services. A public hearing will be scheduled for the City Council to hear from interested parties concerning the petition and the public hearing will be advertised for four weeks in advance of the hearing. The City Council will hear the request for a special assessment and either approve or reject the special assessment request.
- If approved, 100% of the benefited properties will be assessed a pro rata share of the total cost to construct the water main utility services including design, construction, and administrative costs.
The costs will also include financing costs associated with the loan via special assessment.
- The assessment will be billed as an annual amount on the property tax bill and carry an annual financing charge. Property owners have the option to pre-pay their pro rata portion at any time before the assessment roll is prepared or they may pay off the then current balance in any future year without penalty.
- Each neighborhood project will have a different cost per parcel or lot of record depending on the actual total project cost which is impacted by the number of properties included, the density or size of lots, and amount of restoration required after
The Future of Planning and Development
JEA is implementing a cloud-based solution for our water and wastewater planning and development team, eliminating paper plans while maintaining digital files for our records.