ELKINS — Elkins utility customers will receive a double whammy with their new bill, as both their water rates and sewer rates will jump up.
On the Elkins utility bills mailed out Monday, the water rates will increase 3%, while the sewer rate will go up 17.5%.
Last September, Elkins City Council approved a 35% water rate hike for city residents. The final 3% of that increase will go into effect with the new bills.
After this second increase, accounts using the average residential amount of water (3,400 gallons per month) will see an increase of $15.20 per month, or about 50 cents a day, according to the city.
In April, City Council City Council approved a 32.5% sewage rate increase for city residents.
The first increase, of 17.5 %, will be reflected on bills mailed Monday.
A second increase, of around 15% for most customers, will be reflected on bills mailed Jan. 31, 2024.
After both sewer rate increases, accounts using the average residential amount of water (3,400 gallons per month) would see an increase of $13.16 per month, or about 44 cents a day, according to information provided by the city.
“These rate increases are both based on increases in the actual cost of providing these services,” a city press release states. “Water and sewer utilities are required to be supported by the rates paid by customers, so no other sources of funding are available to cover current extreme inflationary costs.”
“Elkins is not the only city raising rates, and many area utilities are seeing increases of similar magnitudes,” a city press release states.
Elkins City Council passed a 21.5% sewer rate increase in November 2019.
Elkins water rates had last increased in December 2017. Under those increased rates, the cost for customers’ first 2,000 gallons rose from $10 to $15.25 per 1,000 gallons, a 52.5 percent increase, and the cost for customers’ next 3,000 gallons rose from $5.49 to $8.50 per 1,000 gallons, a 54.83 percent increase.
The 2017 increase was designed to help the city make the almost $116,000 monthly payments through 2055 to pay for the new $37 million water plant.