Mayor & Commissioners Postpone Decision on Nearly 60% Sewer Fund Rate Increase Until After Election

Elkton Town Hall, April 15, 2010 – The Mayor and Commissioners of Elkton decided to postpone a vote on a nearly 60% increase in water utility rates until after the May election.   A report by the Municipal and Financial Services Group found that Elkton needs a 12% increase for the water fund and a 59% increase for the sewer fund over four-year years if the town is to maintain adequate revenue for the system.  When the town board first heard these numbers on January 13, they mulled over the options, causing once commissioner to say that the increase is a little hard to take.  “It’s not a little hard, it’s very hard,” the consultant responded as he quickly reminded the board to not “shoot the messenger.”  The consultant also discussed with the board the importance of hook-up fees as a way to fund major expansion, cautioning the political leadership that when they eliminate revenue from major projects they’re shifting costs over to ratepayers.  As they pondered the impact of the rate increase, on April evening, a few weeks before Elkton voters go to the polls, Commissioner Jablonski suggested the board wait until after the election to vote on the rate.  That idea was agreeable to the political leadership and the administration.

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8 responses to “Mayor & Commissioners Postpone Decision on Nearly 60% Sewer Fund Rate Increase Until After Election

  1. It sounds as if our local officials have something to worry about. No wonder they agree until after the elections. I think new commissioners and a new mayor are required to run the town who will listen to the residents.

  2. Guess Joe and Mary Joe didn’t want to alarm us taxpayers to much before the election. Didn’t see them out at the tea party either. Some of the other town candidates came out to tell politicians to stop spending our money. How much are they costing me this time.

  3. Joan:

    Thanks for posting your thoughts on Someone Noticed. There were a copule of things at the last meeting that were delayed for later decisions that involve significant costs. I’m working on those and should have something up soon.

  4. Fred. I’m going to file a freedom of information act request to see if I can figure out the actual cost of the increase. The info on it had been circulated by email and all they talked about were options contained in the report/email, referring to them by number, without any details. And since no one is allowed to asks the mayor or commissioners questions during these meetings, there was just no way to figure out what they’re proposing. But I should have something on FOIA of soon so I can report on that. I do know from listening to the discussion that the costs are front loaded with the largest increase coming in the next fiscal year.

    As for the tea party, I don’t believe Joe or Mary Jo were there. I did see two candidates (Wes & Joe) and got a chance to talk to them.

  5. I think the candidates need to be asked some pointed questions before town elections take place. Delaying the town’s business solely on account of an upcoming election is a clear dereliction of duty.

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