Cloverdale Council passes wastewater rate ordinance

Friday, June 16, 2006

To little fanfare, the Cloverdale Town Council passed its wastewater rate ordinance.

The council conducted a special public hearing Wednesday to hear discussion from residents about the ordinance. However, one person attended the meeting.

"I really thought there would be some people here," Council President Don Sublett said.

Sublett offered the resident time to give an opinion regarding the issue, but the attendee declined.

The council moved forward, adopting the ordinance by a 4-1 vote, with council member John Davis voting no.

Davis said he voted against the ordinance because the wastewater facility is in need of money and it's short on employees.

"We need to get it caught up as soon as possible," he said. "Right now, we only have two people. Somebody has got to be there 24 hours a day. They need help."

The ordinance calls for the fixing of rates and charges to be collected by the town from property owners served by the sewage works.

Ordinance 2006-6 calls for rates and charges of the sewage works to be split in two phases.

New wastewater rates will go into effect in Cloverdale on July 1 and different rates will take effect on Jan. 1, 2007.

Town residents that use 2,000 gallons of water monthly currently pay $15.93. In Phase 1 of the rate changes, however, those who use 2,000 gallons per month will pay $22.79 and the rate will increase on Jan. 1, 2007 to $29.74.

In contrast, those using 5,000 gallons currently pay $29.43. In Phase 1, those using 5,000 gallons per month will see the rate increase to $42.11 and Phase 2 will call for an increase of more than $12.

In late May, the council adopted ordinances 2006-5 and 2006-6 to help move forward with a plan to improve the town's existing wastewater treatment facilities.

Ordinance 2006-5 authorized the issuance of sewage works revenue bonds for the purpose of providing funds to pay the cost of certain additions, extensions and improvements to the wastewater plant in town.

At the May meeting, Davis argued the board should make only one rate change and on Wednesday, his position had not changed.

The board also voted unanimously for town clerk/treasurer Patti Truax to post notices in regard to the project and to publish, post and mail information on the project.

The council met in executive session following Wednesday's public hearing to discuss impending litigation with town attorney Scott Hoff.

It also scheduled another special meeting for 6:30 p.m. Monday to finalize its wastewater project.

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