DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Water rates are going up in Montgomery County, beginning in 2018.
Montgomery County Environmental Services is adding nearly a 14% combined rate increase for average residential water and sewer bills in the county.
An average Montgomery County residential customer currently pays about $170 per quarter for water and sewer service. The rate increase will add about $24 to customers’ quarterly bills in 2018.
“Like many systems across the country, we have an aging system and this rate increase is necessary to help us replace and maintain our water and sewer system,” said County Administrator Joe Tuss. “We had low or no rate increases for eight years, and we just can’t put this off any longer.”
County officials say nearly $750 million in spending has been approved over the next 20 years to replace and repair water and sewer systems.
The County will increase rates 14% in 2018, followed by four years of 5.6% rate increases. Montgomery County rate increases have averaged about 2.5% since 2007, which is below the state average of 4% and national average of 6%.
Montgomery County did not pass any rate increases for four years (2010-2013), and then passed increases of 4% (2014), 3.1% (2015), and 3% (2016), with no increase in 2017.
“It was important to keep rates low to help families and businesses during the recession,” said Montgomery County Commission President Dan Foley. “We now have a sustainable, long-term plan to maintain our water and sewer system, but we need to invest in the systems to reach that goal. We’ve waited for the appropriate time to move forward with a new rate plan, and that time is now.”
County officials say nearly $2 million is spent each year to repair approximately 350 water main breaks. More than 50 percent of the water and sewer lines are 50 years old or older.
“Most people don’t think about the infrastructure that helps bring water to their homes and take sewage away, but our system assets are worth about $3.1 billion and it requires constant maintenance and repair,” said Patrick Turnbull, director of Environmental Services.
“For decades, our citizens have enjoyed safe, clean, reliable drinking water, and we want to ensure that their children and grandchildren get to do the same,” Turnbull said.
The 2018 rate increase will vary based on meter size, so customers with larger meters will see a larger increase. After 2018, the rate increase will be a flat percentage increase and will not vary based on meter size.
Customers can input their information into an online rate calculator on the County’s website at www.mcohio.org/water and get estimates for their new bills in 2018. (See a sample bill below.)
The County will give public presentations about the rate increase and five-year plan at the following locations:
- Butler Township, 7 p.m., Nov. 27 (Township Hall, 3780 Little York Rd., Dayton, OH 45414)
- Centerville, 7:30 p.m., Nov. 20 (Municipal Building, 100 West Spring Valley Rd., Centerville, OH 45458)
- Clayton, 7:30 p.m., Dec. 7 (Government Center, 6996 Taywood Rd., Englewood, OH 45322)
- Harrison Township, Noon, Nov. 16 (Township Offices, 5945 North Dixie Dr., Dayton, OH 45414)
- Jefferson Township, 7 p.m., Dec. 5 (Administration Building, One Business Park Dr., Dayton, OH 45417)
- Kettering, 7:30 p.m., Nov. 14 (Government Center, 3600 Shroyer Rd., Dayton, OH 45429)
- Miami Township, 6 p.m., Nov. 28 (Township Offices, 2700 Lyons Rd., Miamisburg, OH 45342)
- Moraine, 6 p.m., Dec. 14 (Municipal Building, 4200 Dryden Rd., Moraine, OH 45439)
- Trotwood, 6 p.m., Nov. 20 (Trotwood-Madison City Schools Board of Education Meeting Chambers, 3594 N. Snyder Road, Trotwood, OH 45426)
- Washington Township, 7:30 p.m., Dec. 4 (Township Offices, 8200 McEwen Road, Dayton, OH 45458)