Water/Sewer Rate Shows Only Minimal Increase in New Budget

By Sue Ellen Woodcock

Water and sewer rates are only going up slightly this coming year as compared to previous years thanks to a transfer of free cash.

The city water and sewer rates have been set for fiscal year 2018 by the City Council last week.

For residential properties the water rate is $4.01 per 100 cubic feet. The sewer rate is $12.49 per 100 cubic feet for a combined rate of $16.50 — a 2.17 percent over FY17 rates of $3.75 for water, $12.40 for sewer for a combined rate of $16.15.

Commercial properties will have a water rate of $6.37 per 100 cubic feet, $19.24 for sewer for a combined rate of $25.61 — a 4.62 percent increase over FY17.

The rates went up only slightly thanks to a $1 million transfer from the city’s free cash line item to the water and sewer fund.

“The mayor did not want a big increase in the rate so we went to free cash,” said George Anzouni

Free cash is the difference between what was budgeted and what was spent.

Since 2008 the city’s water and sewer rate has risen from $10.45 to this year’s rate of $16.50. In 2008 and 2011 water and sewer rates rose well over 10 percent from previous years, in the last five years the water and sewer rates have had a steady increase of between one and four percent.

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