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Council OKs water-rate hike

| April 17, 2012 6:36 PM

Libby water customers will see higher rates with their April bills to be paid in May.

City Council members on Monday, who are staring at $12.3 million in new reservoir and water-distribution system improvements,  unanimously approved the new rate structure.

“It’s the first water-rate increase since Fiscal Year 2008-2009,” said City Clerk Glena Hook.

City residential customers with a three-quarter inch meter or smaller who paid $26 a month for water usage a month ago up to 3,000 gallons will see a $7 increase, to $33.

Residential customers with a one-inch meter who paid $36.68 a month ago for usage of up to 3,000 gallons  will see their rates go from $36.68 to $46.55, or nearly up $10.

These rates are just for water usage. The portion of customers’ bills for sewer treatment will not increase.

Costs for Lincoln County residents receiving city water also will increase.

County residents with three-quarter inch meters who paid $32.53 last month for 3,000 or less gallons, will pay $41.28. Similarly, county residents with a one-inch meter who paid $45.88 last month now will see a bill of $58.23.

For those commercial and industrial water customers living in the county, the cost for 8,000 gallons will be $68.43 for each inch of meter size. The charge  for each additional 1,000 gallons consumed beyond the 8,000 amount will be $6.97.

City water customers will pay $54.82 for each inch of meter for the first 8,000 gallons consumed. The cost for each additional 1,000 gallons for city commercial customers will be $5.58.

For county or city commerical usage beyond 80,000 gallons per inch of meter the charge for additional 1,000 gallons will be $2.98.

Hook, the City Clerk, cautioned the city still is reconciling expenses, and there could be subsequent increases.

“There may be more rate adjustments to come,” she said.

Customers will begin seeing the higher bills in their April bills to be paid in May.