Council approves water rate increase
Knowing it had to be done, the Baldwin City Council had little to discuss Monday night about raising the town's water rates.
In a 4-0 vote, the council approved a 5.7-percent water rate increase to fund Baldwin's water system improvement project -- two new water towers and the extension of the 12-inch water main -- and meet the Kansas Department of Health and Environment's state revolving loan obligations for the project. Council Member Ken Wagner was absent from the meeting.
The approval increases the city's water rates from $5.07 to $5.36 per cubic 100 feet of water -- a 29-cent increase.
Though no discussion took place before Monday's decision, the council reviewed the rate increase, which was recommended by the utility committee, at the March 15 meeting.
At that meeting, Wagner told the council members when the water project was approved in 2002, the estimated cost was about $2.4 million. At the time, the city thought water rates would need to be increased by 86 cents per 100 cubic feet of water, an increase which the council planned to implement in two stages.
In August 2003, the council approved an initial 42-cent per 100 cubic feet of water increase in rates, with the plan for an additional 44-cent increase in the future.
But because the water project came in under budget at $1.8 million, Wagner said, only a 29-cent increase was needed.
In other business Monday, the city council:
- Approved the appointment of Gale Carter, Mike McLees and Tracy Townsley to the Baldwin City Tree Board.
- Heard a presentation from Roger Boyd about the city's recent designation as Tree City U.S.A.