Water, rates permeate city/county workshop

Published: Thursday, October 4, 2012 at 09:52 AM.

Magidson noted that he had been told three years prior in a BOCC by Williams that if the city undertook a rate study to justify raising rates, the county would support it. The city paid for the rate study, has followed the rate structure noted in the study.

“We are darned if we do, darned if we don’t,” Magidson said.

Magidson called the new $21 million water plant a “white elephant” that the city likely did not need and is now stuck with. The city is working through problems at the plant and is going further into debt while replacing some 20 miles of aged distribution pipe.

“The water we are producing is fine, the water we are serving is not,” Magidson noted.

Kennedy added that a major problem was the randomness of problems – one household may have clear water while next door the water is the color of molasses.

The only solution to rising water bills – Magidson noted the city again did not raise the millage rate due to a projected rise in utility rates – was more customers and the ability to pay down some of the city’s debt, or a combination of both.

After more than 90 minutes, the workshop ended on a positive note.

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