MASON — For the third time in a year, water and sewer customers in the Town of Mason will see an increase on their monthly bills.
A water rate increase took effect April 1 and will appear on bills that will be issued the first of May. A prior water increase took effect in April 2015, followed by a sewer rate increase in October 2015.
Mason residents will face a fourth, and final increase in October 2016. It will be for the sewer department.
Mayor Donna Dennis recently stated she hates the fact that the town has to increase the rates, but it is necessary to keep up with the infrastructure. Both a water and sewer improvement project are presently on the verge of construction.
The mayor said too much money is presently being spent to repair leaks and to pay employees overtime wages to repair those leaks. The water project will install new lines and meters on the east side of municipal limits.
The sewer upgrade will mainly be at the plant to make it run more effectively and efficiently, the mayor said.
Based on the minimum bill of 2,000 gallons of water usage, the new bill will be $56.13, up from $51.66. The minimum bill prior to the beginning of the four increases was $45.01. When the final increase on sewer takes effect in October this year, the minimum bill will raise to $58.31.
The actual metered rate is now $11.15 per 1,000 gallons for the first 2,000 gallons per month; $8.25 per 1,000 gallons for the next 8,000 gallons per month; $3.75 per 1,000 gallons for the next 40,000 gallons per month; and $2.82 per 1,000 for all usage over 50,000 gallons per month. The ordinance was read twice in January 2015, with the final reading and public hearing held in February 2015.
Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing who lives in Mason County.