Mpls budget reopened and it'll cost you $5 a month
- Blog Post by: Steve Brandt
- December 15, 2011 - 3:22 PM
Well, the city's brand-new 2012 budget lasted for exactly 13 hours and 7 minutes by this reporter's watch. And it means $5 on everyone's water bill.
The budget adopted Wednesday night by the City Council was reopened Thursday morning by its Ways and Means Committee for one last adjustment that will affect your water and sewer bill, assuming full council approval on Friday.
The last-minute change follows through on an ordinance change the council made earlier in 2011 to allow the switching of part of your water/sewer bill to a fixed charge. The new fixed charges set by the committee amount to about $5 monthly, regardless of how much water you use. That's for a household with a 5/8-inch line, which accounts for for some 85 percent of Minneapolis connections.
According to Department of Public Works staff, the water/sewer rate already had a minimum $4 charge that's incurred by folks such as snowbirds, who don't use any water. But folks who do use at least $4 in water/sewer volume don't pay that charge.
The difference is that the new fixed charges will be paid regardless of how much water is used. They're intended to help the department meet its costs, which are largely fixed, even in years where a drought cuts water use.
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