Tuesday, September 14, 2010

"Water-Sewer Rate Study Seeks Citizen Input"

"Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities customers are urged to attend upcoming information and public input sessions related to the first comprehensive review of water/sewer rates and fees since 1977.

'We’re taking a fresh look at rates and fees charged for the essential water and sewer services we deliver, to see if there are better alternatives,' said Barry Gullet, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities Director. 'We need to hear from customers.'

As a public service, Gullet emphasized the utility’s goal is 'to recommend a rate structure that is considered fair and equitable, while generating the revenues required to operate the water and sewer system.'

Two sets of five public meetings are scheduled across Mecklenburg County. The first series, which starts next week, will include presenting information and gathering input related to the existing water and sewer rate structure. The second series begins in late October/early November and will introduce potential rate & fee alternatives for public feedback.

WEST MEETINGS - September 14 and October 26. Both meetings begin at 6 p.m. and will be held at Clanton Pavilion in Clanton Park, 3132 Manchester Ave.
CENTRAL MEETINGS - September 15 at Noon, and October 27 at 6 p.m.  Both meetings will be held in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center (1st floor Meeting Chambers), 600 East 4th Street. These meetings will be shown on the GOVChannel (Time-Warner Cable channel 16) and streamed from www.charmeck.org &  www.cmutilities.com. An online rate study comment form is available.
NORTH MEETINGS - September 15 and October 28. Both meetings begin at 6 p.m. and will be held at Lee S. Dukes Water Treatment Plant, 7980 Babe Stillwell Road, in Huntersville.
SOUTH MEETINGS - September 16 and November 3. Both meetings begin at 6 p.m. and will be held in the South County Regional Library, 5801 Rea Road.
EAST MEETINGS - September 21 and November 4. Both meetings start at 6 p.m. and will be held at Hickory Grove United Methodist Church, 6401 Hickory Grove Road.

Fifteen community volunteers are serving on a Water/Sewer Rate Study Stakeholders Advisory Group that will act as a sounding board during this process. Red Oak Consulting, a division of Malcolm Pirnie, Inc., is the rate expert working with Utilities staff. A rate structure recommendation will be shared with the Utilities Advisory Group, the City Council Restructuring Government Committee and presented to City Council for consideration in February 2011. Visit www.cmutilities.com for rate study details and updates."