Raleigh delays water rate vote

April 21, 2009 5:40:28 PM PDT
Many Raleigh water customers may have to pay a little more very soon. City leaders are discussing a possible 17 percent increase. That would mean about a $5 a month hike for most users.

But Tuesday, the Mayor delayed the vote and said the council would discuss it again at a work session on Monday.

The reason for the proposed hike is conservation.

The City implemented watering restrictions during the 2007 drought and now customers are using less water. That means Raleigh is selling less water and making less money.

The utilities department is facing a budget shortfall and charging the customer more could be the answer.

Many feel raising rates sends the wrong message, and it's not the time to do so.

At Tuesday's meeting, Mayor Meeker said he would suggest cutting the proposed rate hike in half.

Those pushing for the increase point out that water in Raleigh is still cheap. Customers pay about $2 for every 750 gallons used. The City says that's not bad when you consider that's a little more than you would pay for one bottle of water in a vending machine.


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