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St. Cloud passes 3 percent water rate hike

St. Cloud passes 3 percent water rate hike Click to Enlarge Photo:

Dec 20, 2011 at 10:32 am

ST. CLOUD, Minn. (KNSI) - If you live in St. Cloud, to pay a little bit more in your water bills each month starting next year.

City Council members unanimously approved a 3 percent increase in the city's basic water rates for 2012 Monday. The increase will cost the average homeowner approximately 72 cents more per month over their 2010 rate, St. Cloud Public Services director Pat Shea said.

Shea said the estimated $262,000 increase in revenue from the rate hike will go toward an update to the 2007 master plan for the St. Cloud Waste Water Treatment plant as well as initiating pilot programs to test new water treatment systems at the facility.

Shea said the move was necessary now to avoid larger rate increases later when the city moves toward major expansions and renovations to the plant beginning in 2014. As an example, St. Cloud homeowners say water rates increase by double digits every year between 1992 and 1996 as the city paid for the opening of that new plant.

"We're thinking ahead, we're planning ahead to make sure these large fee increases aren't necessary," Shea said.

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