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Should the city commission charge people for using more water, or should everyone pay the same flat rate?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on September 20, 2004

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Photo of Joe Graves

“I think everyone should pay for what they use. It just seems fair. ”

Photo of Patty Rosenbaun

“The neighbor may use a whole lot, and I don’t use much at all. I don’t want to pay for what they use. ”

Photo of Rachel Tucker

“It just makes sense to charge people for what they use. I just say, save the water.”

Photo of Jerry Neale

“I think they should charge for what people use. I’m used to being in a drought, and it’s the people who water their lawns that use the most water. We can only water every third day. ”


Richard Heckler 13 years, 4 months ago

This question begs for more details before answering.

mrcairo 13 years, 4 months ago

I think what the question refers to, is the City wants to charge Residents for usage on a staggered scale, the first x-gallons at one rate and the next y-gallons at another rate.

But they are NOT going to charge commercial users more. Commercial Businesses will pay the same rate regardless.

I think everyone should pay just a tad more on all their water, with a significant increase after x-gallons.

italianprincess 13 years, 4 months ago

I have to disagree with you mrcairo about this water issue.

I use what ever amount of water I want to and I pay for it each month. No one else pays my bills around here , so therefore no one should have any right to say how much water I use, whether I keep a light on at night ( eletric bill )and how much gas I may use during the winter to keep my family warm.

Who is the city commission to say how much we use. They certainly don't pay my bills and shouldn't have a say in what every house hold uses as far as resources. They have enough to say right now about this and that in our city, but why would you want them to telling you how much of this and that you can use in your own home?

italianprincess 13 years, 4 months ago

Correcting myself here........

The electric and the gas are not a city issue, but I'm sure everyone gets what I'm saying here.

Its bad enough our rights as citizens in Lawrence are slowly being taken away from this law and that ban.

All I'm saying here is the city of Lawrence doesn't pay for the amount of water I use each month on their family bill, so therefore they shouldn't be able to charge anyone more money or set a flat rate for everyone living here.

teach1reach1 13 years, 4 months ago

I wonder if the city will look at the way they charge for sewer while they are at it. My "sewer" charge is always at least twice as much as my "water use" fee. I've already spoken with the city about how they come up with the fee, but I think it's ridiculous to have a $50 bill and only $10 of it is for actual water. I haven't heard from many others on this issue so I don't know if this is common. (I do realize that we are paying the employees who collect our trash, so I don't want to mess with that portion of the bill unless it all goes to giving the trash collectors a raise.) I agree with an earlier statement that I only want to pay for what I use. I recycle, try to limit water use, and live on a tight budget. I can't afford all these utility increases. Whine...and I'm done. Have a great day!

Carmenilla 13 years, 4 months ago

Yah, what's up with the increased "sewer fees"? I pay $10 to $15 more dollars a month than in years past at the same residence. I just can't afford anymore increases whether it be water or gas (which is going up too). What can we do?

Reader 13 years, 4 months ago

It's Been A While, It Doesn't Really Matter How Much Water I Use, Nor Do My Neighbors. It's Just Another Way The "City Commission" Is Jumping On Band Wagon.
Electric (Westar) Raising Costs.... Gas (Aquila) Raising Costs........... City Water (Lawrence) Raising Costs Pending... With Everyone Raising The Costs Of Utilities, Why Do You Think They Want To Raise Ours? Maybe To Pay The "New Water Sprinker System" In South Park, Or Maybe To Make Up For Lost Revenue At The "Lawrence Swimming Pool". (Being Such A Wet And Cool Summer And All), Or Maybe It's To Keep The Greens At "Eagle Bend" Green For "Somebody To Use?" Who Knows? When The Other Utilities Companies Are Raising Their Costs, We Have "No Choice" But To Pay, No Questions Asked. The "Ctiy Of Lawrence" Will Do The Same, No Matter What. We Will Still Have To Pay What Ever The Out Come Will Be. Always Has, Always Will. I've Never Seen A "Under Usage Credit" On My Bill.

italianprincess 13 years, 4 months ago

I called the city today and heres the break down of our water bill each month:

  1. Your Solid Waste fee is your trash pick-up

  2. Your Storm Water fee is based on the sqaure footage of your roof.

  3. Your Sewer fee is the water that leaves your house , goes to the plant ( we pay for the chemicals ) to be cleaned before it put back into the river. They clean it water from all the things you use in your house daily. Laundry soap, bleach, toilet waste etc.

  4. Your Water fee is basically what you use per month for water. I own a daycare and we use alot of water each day ( washing hands all the time and bathroom being used ) so mine can be a bit high at times.

  5. Your State, County, City and State again we can't surpass this any now can we.

Well ladies and gentlemen thats the break down I got from the city today. I thought I would pop back in here and fill you in here. Back to work for me now, my helper is about to leave.

Have a great day, and lets pay for our own bills and not someone elses who may use more water then you do.

craigers 13 years, 4 months ago

Why would we want somebody that has more children or more family in the house to have to pay more since their bills and expenses are already high. This is a dumb idea. I would prefer to just have a rate and pay for what I use like it has been. It is almost like telling people you will give them a break on their water bill, if they take fewer showers and launder their clothes less often. Conserve water and help create a dirtier and smellier Lawrence. Way to go City Commission.

Todd 13 years, 4 months ago

How many properties go without city water service? I think the base fees should just be included in your property tax. (If you are in the water district) Use fees then could be added on top of that if necessary.

Savage 13 years, 4 months ago

Water, bacon, gold, gas, oil, electricity are all commodities and should only be charged in the amount of comsumption. Just think... in a socialist country i am alloted perhaps 200 gallons of water, 3 slabs of pork, 5 gold pieces, and 25 gallons of gas all for a set price determined by the govt. That would suc.

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