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The Lake News Online
  • Lake view: Time to rethink water rate changes

  • On Aug. 11 we attended a public meeting regarding the proposed changes in billing for Sunrise Beach water.
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  • On Aug. 11 we attended a public meeting regarding the proposed changes in billing for Sunrise Beach water.
    The general public received notification about a month prior to the meeting, giving us ample time to formulate our questions and concerns.
    The board of trustees were obviously ill-prepared for the meeting in that their answers were generally that they did not have that info, or those figures in front of them therefore could not answer.
    The board had ample time to prepare for this meeting and all attendees on our side of the table were extremely dissatisfied with their lack of preparation.
    It was brought to everyone's attention by a prominent business owner that we still have quite a few businesses and residences in Sunrise Beach that have never been connected to city water.
    In 2012 when the main portion of members were connected the water department threatened to fine those that were not connected by a certain date.
    The fine was to be substantial.
    It seems that some were actually forced to connect while some were not. If these businesses and households were connected original fine levied for the delinquent period we may not need an increase due to the new revenue generated.
    Also, the board wants to decrease the amount allotted for residential customers by 1,000 gallons and raise our rate on top of that!
    They are planning on designating the 1,000 gallons taken away to the commercial accounts.
    This will give them an extra 1,000 gallons prior to having to pay the per 1,000-gallon rate.
    In our mind this will result in a loss of revenue that the water department is currently collecting under rates at this time.
    Now we want to address the water taste. The water reeks of chlorine and at times my dog won't even drink it.
    A lot of current customers buy bottled water for drinking or have to filter water.
    This results in added expenditure. It would be a lot more palatable (pun intended) to think of the increase if the water tasted good! Why would anyone pay more for an inferior product?
    It was also stated that the current rate for the residential customers is in the top 31 percent in the state, the commercial customers in the top 19 percent, and the water department wants more?
    Let's get everyone connected, collect fines and then talk again.
     

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