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The original item was published from 10/10/2014 1:13:00 PM to 10/10/2014 1:16:50 PM.

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Posted on: October 10, 2014

[ARCHIVED] Water rates take slight hike

Water Rates

October 10, 2014

Water rates in Murphy to undergo several changes
Base meter rates decrease while volumetric rates go up

MURPHY (October 10, 2014) Changes in the rates for water and wastewater service are scheduled for implementation with the October water bills, arriving in homes and businesses in November, says Candy McQuiston, Customer Service Manager.

“There are changes to the current water rates that show a slight increase in the volumetric rate, while at the same time, reflect a decrease in base meter fees,” she said.

The monthly base meter fee, applicable to all meters regardless of water usage, dropped an average of 25 percent overall. For example, meters of three-quarter inch now carry a base meter fee of $20 versus $25, one-inch meters dropped from $42.40 per month to $33.00. In all sizes of meters, the average 25 percent drop applied. In the four-inch meter category, the drop was over 45 percent.

However, in the volumetric use, customers will see an increase. For users in the lower tiers, the rate has increased from $2.95 for usage of zero to 15,000 gallons a month to $3.80. For those using 15,001 to 30,000 gallons a month, the rate has gone from $3.10 to $4.06. Users of over 30,000 but fewer than 45,001 gallons a month, the rate moves from $3.60 to $4.35 a month.

High users, those using between 45,001 and 60,000 gallons will be charged $4.68 instead of $4.10, and those using over 60,001 gallons a month will be charged $5.07 versus the old rate of $4.60.

“In each of the volumetric categories, unlike in the base meter fee, there is a pass-through charge from the North Texas Municipal Water District,” she said. Each of the volumetric categories carries a mandatory $2.11 charge levied by the NTMWD.

The same holds true for irrigation rates. The NTMWD adds a $2.11 charge to the City portion for irrigation rates. As a result of the new rate schedule, irrigation customers will see a slight rise. Low irrigation users, those using 15,000 gallons or less a month, will see rates go from $3.95 to $4.13. The next category, users of between 15,001 and 30,000 gallons will see a change from $4.10 to $4.43 a month.

Users of between 30,001 and 45,000 gallons will pay $4.78 as opposed to $4.60. High irrigation users, those using more than 45,001 but less than 60,001, will see an increase of $0.18 from the former $5.00 monthly rate. And, those high irrigation users of over 60,000 gallons a month will see rates move from $5.60 a month to $5.64 a month.

In a similar fashion, rates for wastewater service reflects a reduction in the base rate and a slight increase in volumentric wastewater rates.

The minimum base rate dropped to $18 from $20 for each category. The charge for wastewater is determined by the rate multiplied by the usage for each customer during the months of November, January and February, when most, if not all, of the water used in homes is captured by the wastewater system.

The new volumetric rates for wastewater also include a significant charge from the NTMWD. In each category, the water supplier adds a $2.26 charge for wastewater collection and processing. Adding the $0.76 the City charges, brings the wastewater charge to $3.02 for each category.

“Water is such a precious commodity that we are all very mindful of every aspect of it,” said McQuiston. “From the circumstances that affect our lake reservoirs like the drought and zebra mussels to the importance of conserving it, fixing leaks and using it responsibly.”

The new charges will apply to October use, reflected in November bills. Implementing the changes to the structure during the late fall ensures that the new charges miss most of the outdoor watering season.

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