04/10/2019- Menominee Water and Wastewater customers would see a modest increase in their bills starting in July under recommendations from an updated rate study prepared by Coleman Engineering. The last study was done in 2014, and since then the city’s utility has seen declines in water and wastewater usage, and some of the expenses increasing more than the previous assumptions. The charges for both water and wastewater are divided into two categories, a fixed or “meter” charge, and a commodity charge based upon usage. The fixed charge is designed to cover bond and contract services costs. The commodity charge covers other expenses in operating the water and wastewater systems. While the study recommends increases in some charges, and reductions in others, the bottom line is the average residential user would see about a $3.89 increase in their bill each quarter. The Water/Wastewater Utility Board recommended the city council accept the study’s proposed rates as they prepare their budget. If approved, the increase would go into effect July 1st. The study only took into account the revenue needs for operating the utility. In the future the utility will be looking for additional revenue to pay for water and sewer line replacements in connection with road projects and state mandates to do maintenance on the aging sewer system. The city is still working on how much they need to spend on these capital projects, but the rate study estimates the fixed sewer charge for residences would increase about $3.25 per quarter for each million dollars spent on capital projects.
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