At a Logan Municipal Council meeting earlier this month, council member Tom Jensen introduced an issue that could impact every Logan resident.
“We have now a fun item: the cost of service study and proposed water rate increase,” Jensen said.
The Storm, Water and Wastewater Advisory Board recommended a 35 percent water fee increase for residential users beginning on April 1, with a three percent increase every year for the next four years.
“I know this is painful, will be painful, but kicking the can down the road only makes the hit bigger in the future,” Jensen said.
According to Paul Lindhardt, interim public works director, the fee increase would make funding Logan’s water more sustainable and better able to keep up with inflation. Some of the money would go toward infrastructure replacements, including a new 10-million gallon water tank. Paying more up front would allow the city to rely less on bonds or payment plans for these projects, saving money in the long term.
So how would this affect the average resident’s bill on a monthly basis? Lindhardt said the average household uses 6,000 gallons of water.
“The 6,000 gallon usage would currently cost a home $23.30,” Lindhardt said.
But after the 35 percent increase?
“$31.47, which is an increase of $8.17 per month,” Lindhardt said.
This means the average household would pay about $100 more per year for water. One reason to implement the fee increase in April is to avoid introducing it during the summer, which would make it more noticeable to residential customers.
“There’s kind of a double whammy, especially with the residential customers. In the summertime we irrigate,” he said. “The majority of Logan City is irrigated with culinary water, so the water bills go up.”
The residential fee increase would be followed by a commercial fee increase implemented on July 1. The Municipal Council will hold a public hearing about the proposed fee increase at their meeting on March 20.