BG water fee hike approved

Bowling Green’s Board of Public Utilities officially approved changes in the cost of water service Monday
night and decided to extend a water line on Bowling Green Road East.
The water rates have been discussed for several months and changes are effective Jan. 1, 2010.
Bowling Green residential customers will see a 30-cent-per-month increase on the service charge portion
of the bill. That amounts to an extra $3.60 for 2010. When the three-year plan is implemented at the end
of 2012, residential customers will be paying $10.80 per year more for water service. The change does
not affect the cost of water used.
Commercial and industrial customers will see increases in demand charges, based on the diameter of the
line serving their facility.
Wholesale water rates, which affect customers outside the city and the Northwestern Water and Sewer
District, will increase 12 percent per year in each of the next five years. The monthly service charge
change does not affect these customers.
The changes were made following a cost of service study that determined the city was not collecting
enough money to cover costs of operating the water system.
With Chairman John Mekus dissenting, the BPU agreed to move forward with construction of a 12-inch master
plan water line on BG Road East.
The project is intended to replace a two-inch line that was privately installed earlier this year to
service a handful of homes and a church that have wells that have been condemned.
The project has a $180,000 estimate for 1,700 lineal feet of line. Assistant Director of Utilities Paul
Brock said after the meeting he expects the bids to come in somewhat lower, based on bids received for
other projects in recent months.
Some of the cost will be recovered through charges assessed to those who tap the line now and in the
future.
"We’ve been working hard to get substandard lines out of the system," Brock said. "It’s
not good to create one that we’ll have to deal with sometime in the future."
Later in the session the board approved seeking bids for substandard sewer replacement projects in 2010.
The work won’t be done unless funds are appropriated later this year in the 2010 budget.
The board also:
¥ Heard business was brisk at the wastewater treatment plant Friday when several hundred motor homes
leaving the Family Motor Coach Association event used the dump facility at the plant. Superintendent
Doug Clark said the staff was busy for several hours. "Some of them had a two-hour wait but they
were gracious and thankful for the service."
¥ Learned 2,416 of the new automatic read electric meters have been installed. There are about 10,000
electric customers on the system. Water meters will be installed later.