Maryville residents and businesses could see their water bill rates go up 25% and sewer rates 50% next year.
Over the summer, Maryville hired a company called NewGen Strategies & Solutions to perform a water and sewer rate study for the first time since 2005.
Eric Callocchia, NewGen Strategies & Solutions representative, provided the city with results at the Sept. 22 City Council meeting.
Rate studies determine if a city’s water system is able to bring in enough revenue to sustain itself, as well as bring in enough funds for future projects on the water system. NewGen Strategies & Solutions study claims at the current rate Maryville’s system does not bring in enough revenue to support itself for future projects.
From 2012 to 2015 the amount of revenue brought in from the water usage dropped and has since flatlined. Even during the COVID-19 pandemic when other communities saw an increase in water usage, Maryville did not see a similar increase.
“We calculated what the city needs to invest on an annual basis in total on water and wastewater and in total it's about 1.5 million dollars a year for fiscal year 2022 and increases from there,”Callocchia said.
In order to bring in more revenue to pay for projects to maintain the water system, NewGen Strategies & Solutions' proposal is for the city to increase the water and sewer rates for all its customers.
The proposal also looks to increase sewage rates by 50%. Maryville only has two different categories when it charges for sewer rates. Inside the city, outside the city and county residents all get the same charge.
Customers that live outside the county and the city get a higher rate. Both categories would see a 50% rate increase in 2022 and a 3% increase in rates for the next four years.
The suggestion was to have a first jump of water rates by 25% then have each following year to the next four years have an individual rate increase of 3%. This rate increase would be added to both usage rates as well as the minimum the use rate. For example, inside city limits each customer is charged a minimum fee $5.23, each month. A 25% increase would bring that charge $6.53 each month.
Maryville’s water rates change depending on where you live. The city has four different categories that it uses to determine what individuals pay. The four categories are in city limits, out of city limits, Nodaway county users and annexed users in service territory.The farther a customer is from city limits, the more they pay. All four of these categories will be impacted by a potential rate increase.
The study also concluded that the rate customers are being charged for their water meter and sprinkler systems is also not enough. Most residential buildings in Maryville have a five-eighths water meter on their house and currently do not pay any added fee for that meter. However, this proposal would add an extra fee onto a water bill.
The recommended rates would have owners of buildings with a five-eights meter pay an extra $16.95 per month for 2022. That number would then drop to $1.89 for 2023 and accrue a 3% increase like the other water rates.
As of now, the city charges buildings with automatic fire protection sprinklers $3.89 per month up to 100 sprinklers and then an additional 3 cents per sprinkler. This proposal would increase that cost by 496% and charge buildings with sprinklers up to one hundred sprinklers $23.19 per month with an additional cost of 18 cents per sprinkler after the initial 100.