BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
FORT MADISON – A proposal in front of the Fort Madison City Council could bump city sewer rates by 13% starting in June.
At Tuesday’s regular City Council meeting, the council will consider a recommendation from Public Works Director Larry Driscoll to boost sewer rates by .35/1,000 gallons.
The increase is applied to nonmonitored customers, as well as monitored customers’ minimum monthly charge for nonmetered contributions. The Basic Service charge per bill would also go up by $4.50 per month.
According to sample increase put together by Driscoll, on an average 4,500 gallon monthly consumer, the monthly bill would increase from $45.98 per month to $52.05 per month, an increase of $6.07 per month or 13.2%.
Driscoll wrote in a memo for the upcoming meeting that the increase would help pay for Combined Sewer Separation projects mandated by the state.
“We have completed about 50% of the CSO projects and we are still sticking with the final completion date, which is scheduled for 2027,” Driscoll wrote. “In order to complete these mandated projects, as well as continue with the ongoing maintenance and upkeep projects required by a sewer system, a rate increase is necessary.”
The city’s last sewer rate increase study was completed in 2012 with a fairly large increase and then another smaller increase in 2016.
The resolution in front of the council would also carry an annual 2% increase in the rate beginning in 2020. Any late paymenets would subject to a 10% late fee.
In a related issue, the council will also vote on transferring $113,000 in this budget and in the next fiscal year budget from city water department maintenance and operations funds to the city’s general fund to reimburse the general fund for a booster station built on Bluff Road