Petal residents to see 25-cent water bill increase

By HASKEL BURNS,

Petal residents may notice an increase in their water bills beginning early next month, but it won’t take a whole lot out of their wallets at an extra 25 cents per month.

During Tuesday’s meeting of the Petal Board of Aldermen, board members voted to adopt an ordinance that raises the minimum residential water rate from $13 to $13.25 for up to 2,000 gallons per month. Ward 5 Alderman Tony Ducker provided the sole vote against the measure.

“The water budget is a budget that only relies on revenues generated by services,” Ward 3 Alderman Clint Moore said. “It doesn’t have any funds from any other locations coming into it – from taxes or anything like that – so we had to make sure that our revenues are keeping up with our expenses.

“That’s a department where you could see major, major expenses from an emergency, so we want to make sure we’re planning for the future to have enough money in that account.”

Under the ordinance, each additional 1,000 gallons used per month would be billed at $6.

Commercial water also is set at $13.25 for up to 2,000 gallons, with an extra $6 per 1,000 gallons for 2,000 to 5,000 gallons used. A $5 charge will be added per 1,000 gallons for 5,100 to 1,000 used, and $4.50 per 1,000 gallons charged for usage above 100,000 gallons.

The ordinance will take effect 30 days from Sept. 3.

“We haven’t really heard a whole lot (of feedback) about it,” Moore said. “Last year, we went up on the sewer rates, and the year before that, we went up on the water rates per 1,000-gallon usage. This was just a simple base rate quarter addition, just trying to keep pace with the other expenses.”

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