City raises water and sewer rates
STANDISH — It’s a subject that’s been tossed around for the last couple months, but on Dec. 17 the Standish City Council passed a resolution officially raising water rates approximately 39 percent and sewer usage rates 50 percent to make up for an over $58,000 revenue shortfall directly related to the closing of Standish Max.
Effective Jan. 1, 2010, an increase of $2.40 will be charged for every 1,000 gallons of water used, raising the cost per thousand gallons from $6.70 to $9.10; the sewer rate per thousand gallons will increase $1.65, raising that cost from $3.30 per thousand gallon to $4.95.
The 75 cents sewer debt payment collected was lowered to five cents.
All rates will continue to be doubled for out-of-city customers who receive Standish’s water and sewer utilities, said City Manager Mike Moran.
Mayor Mark Winslow said the bonding agent for the water and sewer infrastructure costs, the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development, informed him about a month and a half ago, in Lansing, that the city should’ve already raised the rates in the past to establish a bond debt reserve fund, which Winslow said doesn’t exist currently.
He said was in Lansing to testify on the city’s behalf for relief from the state when he heard the unpleasant news.
“We went there for one reason and were old something else,” Winslow said, adding that he hopes the rates are increased so high only temporarily. “Our goal, of course is to get them back down again.”