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Sidney Council, first reading of water and sewer rate restructure

SIDNEY, Neb. - The Sidney City Council had their first reading of a new ordinance that would change the rate structure for water and sewage usage to calculate a more accurate demand on infrastructure. According to City Manager Ed Sadler, water currently has 28 different base rates, and seven tiered usage rates that increase with water amounts used to encourage conservation. Sewage has two base rates that do not reflect demand for infrastructure.

The ordinance must be read at two more city council meetings before it can be passed to give time for the public to express their opinion.

Water line sizes have been used for years to set base rates. Although that may have been a good measurement for the original owners of a building, it may no longer be the case if the building was sold later to someone who uses less water than the original owner.

Sadler wants to make five water tiers with five matching sewer tiers based on usage. Sadler explained that this will affect very few if any residential users. Only big water users will see a difference. It is expected to affect only six percent of Sidney water consumers. Higher water users such as irrigators who don’t need a sewer system will not pay as much for the sewer services. The change is estimated to increase revenue by approximately $10,000 a month. The proposed tiers are posted below:

Usage(units per year)

Water

Customers(water)

Sewer

Over 6000 

$200 

5

$250

Over 1200 

$100

37

$125

Over 240 

$50

94

$60

Under 240 

$15    

384  

$25

Residential     

$12    

2894 

$16

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