The Dunwoody City Council voted at its Feb. 27 meeting to raise the stormwater utility fee to fund an overhaul of the city’s aging system.

The annual fee will increase from $48 to $69 for most homeowners. The vote was unanimous.

Councilman Terry Nall said though he “despises” tax increases, “it’s prudent, conservative logic” to repair the storm water system before problems become more costly in the future.

“We’re in the middle of a race to repair these pipes before we have a catastrophic failure,” Nall said.

At the City Council’s Feb. 13 meeting, Public Works Director Michael Smith recommended the city spend $900,000 to $1 million each year for pipe replacement. Currently, the city dedicates $525,000 to repairs, which is not enough to keep up with the number of pipes that are failing.

Smith said over the past two years, the Public Works Department has conducted a survey of the city’s storm water system. The department learned that 60 percent of the pipes in the city are more than 35 years old, which is past their typical service life.