City Plans to Hike Sewer Rates by 30 Percent

In order to pay for the 13-year-old renovation of the Cameron Sewage Disposal Plant, the city is preparing to implement a 30-percent increase in its sewage rates, Mayor Julie Beresford announced at Monday’s council meeting.

Cameron residents with a minimum bill of $30.86 for 2,000 gallons of water used per month would see an increase of about $9.25 on their sewage bill.

Beresford first mentioned the possibility of a sewage hike in June after the city discovered in a public service audit that its rates were not sufficient to cover operating costs and its debt service for the sewage plant.

The intent was to gradually introduce the increase, however, Beresford said the city recently determined a rate increase is necessary and gradually increasing bills will not be possible.

“It’s going to be painful,” Beresford said. “There is no way to do this in steps. This had not been taken care of in 12 years, so it has to be addressed now.”

Beresford said the rate increase will be discussed at the next council meeting. Any rate increase will have to be approved by the West Virginia Public Service Commission.

In other business, council members went into a closed-door session for about an hour to discuss a personnel and real estate matters.

No decisions were made, according to city attorney Rosemary Humway-Warmuth.