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HCSA hosts hearing today on new water, sewer rates
SoVaNow.com / December 19, 2013
Customers of the Halifax County Service Authority will have a chance to speak out today at a public hearing on proposed water and sewer rate adjustments for the coming year.
The new rate schedule represents a step towards equalizing the rates that customers in HCSA service areas pay — with most users in South Boston and Halifax paying slightly more, and others outside the urban area slightly paying less.
The public comment period begins at 5 p.m. today in the meeting room of the HCSA building, located on Houghton Drive. The public hearing will follow the regular monthly meeting of HCSA board members which begins at 3:30 p.m.
A vote on the proposed rates will be taken after the public comment period. If passed, the rates will become effective with bills going out after January 1, 2014.
HCSA directors say the rate plan is intended to balance water and sewer fees for homes and businesses served by the Authority. In general, in-town users in South Boston and Halifax will pay slightly higher rates, while the cost of service for out-of-town customers will drop slightly.
“We are still gradually working towards the equalization of rates for our customers, which has always been the goal of this Authority,” said HCSA Vice Chairman Coleman Speece, who added that full rate equalization remains at least four years away.
Under the new rate structure:
South Boston and Halifax in-town customers who use up to 24,000 gallons of water will see the largest cost increase, with rates going from $4.30 to $4.50 per 1,000 gallons — a 20 cent jump.
Large-volume customers in South Boston (those who use between 24,000 and 500,000 gallons of water bimonthly) will see their rates jump by 3 percent, from $3.00 to $3.10 per thousand. The largest customers (those who use in excess of 500,000 gallons) will see their rates climb by 3.6 percent, from $2.80 to $2.90 per 1,000 gallons.
South Boston out-of-town water customers who use less than 24,000 gallons bimonthly will enjoy a rate drop. Those customers will pay $5.05 per thousand gallons, rather than the current rate of $5.10.
Water users in the Riverdale residential area who consume 24,000 gallons or less will see their rates climb from $4.70 to $4.75 per thousand gallons, a 1 percent increase.
Larger Riverdale customers (bimonthly consumption of 24,000 to 500,000 gallons) will see the cost of water jump by 2.7 percent, with the rate rising from $3.70 to $3.80 per thousand gallons. The largest Riverdale residential customers (using in excess of 500,000 gallons) will pay 3 percent more, with their water rate going from $3.40 to $3.50 per thousand.
Non-residential Riverdale customers who use less than 24,000 gallons will see their costs drop by 2 percent — from the current rate of $5.10 to $5.00.
Larger non-residential Riverdale customers (using between 24,000 to 500,000 gallons) will see their costs climb by 2.7 percent, with the water rate rising to $3.80 from the current level of $3.70. Even larger users will pay $3.35 per thousand, up from the current rate of $3.25.
No changes are proposed for Clover customers. They currently pay $5.50 per thousand gallons for consumption of less than 24,000 gallons, or $5.00 for more than 24,000 gallons.
The rate for VIR customers will remain the same — $9.75 per thousand gallons.
With sewer rates, the broadest increase being contemplated would affect metered customers in the Town of South Boston who use more than 24,000 gallons. Their sewer rate would rise to $4.90 per thousand, up from the current $4.85.
The largest sewer users in town — those who consume more than 500,000 gallons — will see their rates increase to $4.65 from the current $4.60.
Also proposed for an increase: the sewer rate of Riverdale non residential customers who use between 24,000 and 500,000 gallons. They would pay $4.90 per thousand gallons, up from $4.85.
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