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Increases to wastewater, water charges could appear on residents' December utility bills

After years of minimal increases in water and wastewater rates, and with a large project to renovate the wastewater system in the works, the city is poised to increase rates effective as early as December.

Staff has proposed that "the changes take effect for building permits issued on or after October 8th and that the water and wastewater utility rates would become effective with the November-December billing cycle. Customers would see utility bills with the new rates during the third week of December under this proposed schedule," at a previous Sandy City Council meeting.

At its Sept. 3 meeting, the Council explored a rate model and how different rate increase percentages would affect the city financially.

Doug Gabbard, project manager with contractor FCS Group, proposed to Council a 98% increase in wastewater rates in the first year, followed by smaller increases of 16%, 15%, 10% and 10% in years after. For an average household, the first-year increase could amount to a $24.44 increase.

Proposed water rate increases were to start at 5%, then decrease to 4%, 3%, 2% and 2%.

Council discussed these rates but have not determined what the increases will be.

"We haven't done any reinvestment in our system in a generation, so we're in a time of investment," City Manager Jordan Wheeler told The Post previously. "Even with the increase we'll still be in the middle of the pack (cost-wise). People will feel it, so we want the public comment."

"At the end of the day it truly isn't a choice," Mayor Stan Pulliam added. "We have to upgrade. We're at a point where we have to do this and we have to find a way to fund it."

A public hearing on utility rate changes will take place on Monday, Sept. 16, with a public hearing on the wastewater system development charge (SDC) changes scheduled for Monday, Oct. 7.


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