Lawrence residents may face an increase in water and sewer service rates, starting in 2007.
Under a proposal before city commissioners, residential water rates would increase between 8 and 10 cents per 1,000 gallons.
The fee within city limits would go up from $2.78 per 1,000 gallons in 2006 to $2.88 per 1,000 gallons next year. Outside the city, residential rates would increase from $3.46 per 1,000 gallons to $3.54 per 1,000 gallons.
Commissioners may also raise sewer service rates 39 to 41 cents per thousand gallons. Inside the city, rates would increase from $4.25 per 1,000 gallons to $4.64 per 1,000 gallons. The proposed increase for outside the city is from $4.66 per 1,000 gallons to $5.07 per 1,000 gallons.
According to a staff memo, "a household using 6,000 gallons of water a month in 2006 would pay an $18.63 water bill and $33.30 sewer bill; in 2007 that would change to $19.38 and $36.34, respectively."
City staff said the rate increase is necessary because the costs to provide water and sewer service change from year to year.
More about the possible rate increase
"We need to be able to run the pumps and buy the chemicals, and those costs are not static. They fluctuate some," said Assistant City Manager Debbie Van Saun.
Commissioners typically increase water and sewer service fees incrementally each year as part of a five-year plan to address those operating costs as well as plans for maintenance and new facilities.
"This next incremental rate increase will allow for operational expenses to be taken care of as well as the capitol improvements," Van Saun said.
Lawrence city commissioners will consider these increases as part of the 2007 budget during their regular meeting at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, Sixth and Massachusetts streets.