Tahoe City PUD approves five-year water, sewer rate hikes | SierraSun.com

Tahoe City PUD approves five-year water, sewer rate hikes

Margaret Moran

TAHOE CITY, Calif. — The Tahoe City Public Utility District Board of Directors on Friday approved a five-year increase in water and sewer rates.

In 4-1 votes, the board approved increasing sewer rates 5.7 percent annually over the next five years, while water rates would go up to achieve a 6 percent annual increase in revenue from where rates stand today.

“We continue to strive to keep customer rates as low as possible while at the same time being able to reinvest in our aging infrastructure,” board president Dan Wilkins said in a statement. “It is important that we ensure safe and reliable water and sewer services not just now, but also into the future.”

Board vice president Erik Henrikson was the lone “no” vote for both increases.

The district serves 4,144 water customers and 7,540 sewer customers, said Terri Viehmann, district clerk, during the meeting.

A majority of customers — more than 50 percent — of either service had to protest the increase for it to be rejected.

The PUD received 20 sewer and 15 water protests by the end of Friday’s public hearing.

Today, a typical residential water customer pays about $73.94 a month, while sewer customers pay $36.34 a month, according to the district.

With the approval, average residential rates could start at $76.49 and $38.41 in 2015, respectively, and rise to $96.57 and $47.93 by 2019.

The proposed rates are the maximum that can be implemented during the next five years.

The rates will help cover operating cost increases and various capital improvements, according to the PUD.

They go into effect Jan. 1, 2015.

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