New London City Council raises its residential water and sewer rate
NEW LONDON -- The bill for an average residential water and sewer customer in New London will go up about $2 a month. The New London City Council unanimously approved Wednesday increasing the rate charged for water and sewer service from $10.16 p...
NEW LONDON -- The bill for an average residential water and sewer customer in New London will go up about $2 a month.
The New London City Council unanimously approved Wednesday increasing the rate charged for water and sewer service from $10.16 per 1,000 gallons used to $10.80 per 1,000 gallons. Councilman Dave Schneider was absent.
The rate increase was needed to off-set a projected deficit in the sewer fund. With the increase, both the sewer and the water fund will have a $3,300 surplus, city administrator Trudie Guptill said. The extra money will serve a "cushion" for maintenance and repairs to the system, she said.
While the total rate charged per 1,000 gallons increased, the water rate actually decreased. It went from $3.26 per 1,000 gallons to $3.20.
The sewer rate increased from $6.90 to $7.60 per 1,000 gallons. The last time the city raised sewer or water rates was in 2003.
The council approved the increase after a public hearing, which one person attended. Greg Christenson, owner of the Country Stop on state Highway 23, is one of the highest water users in the city.
He said his business, which is a gas station, car wash and A & W restaurant, used about 1 million gallons of water last year.
He had some concerns about the rate increase, but talked mostly about his base fee. The base fee is determined by how much water a customer uses in the previous year. His base fee has gone up, Christenson said.
Guptill said the Spicer city administrator, the Green Lake Sanitary Sewer and Water District director, the Kandiyohi County public works director and she will be meeting Friday to discuss whether the district could change the way it charges the cities to pay for the debt service on the system. Currently, the base fees charged to city residents pay for the city's responsibility of the debt.
The Green Lake Sanitary Sewer and Water District serves New London, Spicer and Green Lake.
An adjustment might make water and sewer costs "less painful for larger water users," Guptill said.
Christenson said he was happy to hear about the meeting and a possible change.
An average residential water and sewer customer in New London uses between 3,000 and 4,000 gallons of water a month. A home using 3,000 gallons would see a $1.92 increase per month.
The water and sewer bill for a household using 4,000 gallons would go up $2.56 a month.