New fee structure would hike Park Ridge water rates
Updated: July 15, 2012 2:49PM
Water rates will be going up for Park Ridge residents if the City Council approves a new fee structure reviewed by aldermen this week.
The new structure, as proposed, will charge residents, schools and businesses a base rate according to the size of their water meter. For most single-family homes the base meter charge will be $16.53, bimonthly.
In addition, water users will pay three separate fees per 1,000 gallons of water used. These fees, which cover the cost of purchasing water from Chicago, a Park Ridge rate and a sewer-usage fee, add up to $6.63 per 1,000 gallons of water used. There is also a bimonthly minimum sewer charge of $2.98.
On the low end, projections indicate that homes using 4,000 gallons of water bimonthly and have a water meter measuring five-eighths of an inch (the size of a majority of meters) will see their water bills increase on average about $11. For homes that use 12,000 gallons of water the average water bill will increase $21.
Subsequent years also call for steady increases in the water rates to account for increased costs from the city of Chicago, the city of Park Ridge’s multimillion-dollar sewer-improvement project, and a plan to purchase an automated water-meter-reading system that city officials say will improve accuracy in water billing.
The city has not calculated costs for larger water users, like schools, businesses and Advocate Lutheran General Hospital.
A first reading of an ordinance to approve the new fee structure is expected to go before the City Council on June 18 and residents are invited to ask questions and make comments. The meeting will be at 7 p.m. at Park Ridge City Hall, 505 Butler Place.
If the rate structure is adopted by the City Council on July 16, water users will see the new rate structure reflected on their late-July bills, Stutts said.
The proposed water-rate structure was recommended by a consultant following a $9,500 study. Before that Stutts had conducted her own rate study at the direction of the City Council, also calling for users to pay base rates according to meter size. Her rate structure, though, did not include a base sewer charge or account for the purchase of an automated water-meter-reading system.