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The Spring Hill Board of Mayor and Aldermen on Monday night approved an ordinance adjusting utility billing to ensure the Water and Sewer budgets are self-sustaining, which will increase customers’ monthly utility bills, starting with the November 2019 bill.
Water and sewer rates (the per-thousand-gallon rates) will not change, but rather the 2,000 gallons included in the current minimum base charge will be eliminated over a two-year phased approach.
Currently, the City includes 2,000 gallons of water usage within its base rate at no charge for both water and sewer minimums. The 2,000 gallons included in the minimum charge will be reduced to 1,000 gallons, starting with the October-November meter reading. After one year, the remaining 1,000 gallons included in the base rate will be eliminated, meaning all water/sewer billing will be based entirely on actual usage. The base rate will continue to be charged as part of monthly utility bills for water and sewer.
All City of Spring Hill water/sewer utility customers will receive a notice explaining the changes with their Sept. 30 utility bill.
The adjustment is needed to correct operational deficiencies in the Water/Sewer Budget, following recommendations from a Cost of Service Study contracted through an outside firm. The base rate adjustments are intended to balance the Water/Sewer Budget, which experienced a loss for two consecutive years (Fiscal Years 2016-17 and 2017-18).
This adjustment is estimated to result in over $600,000 in new revenue in the water system, and over $700,000 in the sewer system in the first year. After the second phase is implemented, the BOMA will review utility rates to determine if further adjustments are needed.