The Bend City Council has approved a bevy of fee increases for the upcoming fiscal year.
That means rate hikes for water and sewer customers.
“Last night Bend City council adopted rates increases of 2.5% for sewer, 3% for water and 7% for stormwater,” said Sharon Wojda, City of Bend Chief Financial Officer. “For an average customer, depending on how much water you use, you could see an average rate increase of about $5 per month.”
Central Oregon Daily News drove through some Bend neighborhoods looking for people using water to ask how they feel about paying a little more.
We found Jim Boeddeker running water through his boat motor to make sure it was ready for a day on the lake with his grandchildren.
“I’m retired. The check for city utilities gets pulled directly out of my account,” Boeddeker said. “So as long as it stays within the lines I really don’t spend a lot of time looking at it.”
Across town I encountered John Domogalla working in his front yard.
He wanted to know if the city is separating new water and sewer system development fees from the cost of maintaining existing infrastructure to established neighborhoods such as his.
“I’ve been here since 2000. I think I’ve already paid my dues and not totally interested in adding equipment for the southeast and northeast development,” Domogalla said. “Bend is a developing city. They need to divide that up a bit more.”
City officials say the 2.5% sewer and 3% water fee increases cover rising operating costs.
The 7% stormwater fee increase allows the city to upgrade its stormwater drain systems, one of the largest being the Newport Corridor Improvement Project.