Water rates to increase in March

Staff Writer

The Board of Governors of the St. Marys Area Water Authority recently approved a rate increase that will go into effect systemwide on March 1.
Increased operating costs and capital projects that will upgrade two of the finished water storage tanks in the city's distribution system are the primary reasons for the increase. The increase includes an adjustment to the metered usage; the readiness-to-serve charge, which is a fixed quarterly charge based on water meter size, will not change.
The current rate structure for a typical residential customer includes a fixed quarterly charge of $22 with additional charges being incurred based on metered usage that is calculated at the rate of $3.57 per thousand gallons used for the first three pumpings.
The new metered rate will be increasing from the current $3.57 per 1,000 gallons to $4 per 1,000 gallons for use by all customer classes including residential, commercial and industrial. The typical residential customer using 20,000 gallons of water over a three-month period would see their water bill increase from $93.40 per quarter under the current rate structure to $102 per quarter under the new rate structure.
This new rate is still by far the lowest compared to any large municipal supplier in the four-county area around St. Marys.