Water-.69%, Sewer-6.27%

Unless the city council takes action to prevent it, water and sewer rates will increase at the beginning of October.
As Dale Timmermann and Tricia Elam of Timmermann & Co. Ltd. presented the city’s annual audit report on Monday, they also showed the city’s water and sewer production costs.
That report shows that the city’s water system production costs for the year ending on April 30 were $1,777,198, .69 percent ($12,128) higher than that of the previous year, $1,765,070.
The sewerage system costs for that same period totaled $983,000, 6.27 percent ($57,965) above the previous year’s total of $925,035.
So, according to an ordinance passed by the city council a number of years ago, water rates would increase by .69 percent and sewer rates by 6.27 percent as of Oct. 1.
That is, unless, the council decides not to implement those rate hikes.
The ordinance passed years ago mandates that water and sewer rates reflect the city’s actual production costs, and if those costs increase, the rates mirror such increases. That ordinance was put on the books after the council approved an increase of about 15 percent, necessitated by putting off smaller increases in previous years.
The ordinance does, however, give the council the authority to keep any rate increases from going into effect or to adjust any rate increases.
In presenting the report, Timmermann recommended that the council “let those increases go into place.
“That’s kind of why you put that (ordinance) in place,” he said.
A historical analysis of water and sewer systems shows that 303,765,900 gallons were pumped and 287,416,970 gallons (94.62 percent) were accounted for. That’s up from the previous year’s figure of 86.65 percent.
In presenting the audit report, Timmermann said that the city’s general expenditures exceeded revenue by $237,069, with that deficit due to large equipment purchases, including the purchase of a new ladder truck for the fire department for $710,000.
In addition to noting losses in specific areas, Timmermann pointed out that the city’s sales tax total increased from 1.766 million to $1.847 million, and that the state income tax figure for the year ending April 30 was $709,000, up from $672,000.
The city’s revenue from gaming was $120,000, up from $57,000 the previous year.
 

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