Rates for most customers of DeKalb Utility District will be increasing effective with bills due on July 10th.
Basic rates for customers who use up to 2,000 gallons per month will increase from $16.50 to $17.50. For monthly usage above 2,000 gallons up to 5,000 gallons, the costs will be an additional $6.50 per thousand, which is an increase of a dollar per thousand gallons. Customers who use more than 5,000 gallons per month will pay an additional $7.00 per thousand. These rates will apply to all customers except in the Gassaway and Silver Point service areas.
A customer, for example, who uses 6,000 gallons of water per month will see their bill increase from $38.50 to $44.00 plus tax.
Jon Foutch, DUD manager, says the utility has little choice but to adjust rates since the operation is currently running in the red. "We knew that we would be operating in the red this year but the state won’t let us do that for two years in a row.". The state requires water utilities to be financially self supporting. Foutch adds that this rate increase has nothing to do with the City of Smithville’s plans to raise it’s water rates. The DUD purchases most of it’s water supply from the City of Smithville. The DUD pays the city $1.90 per thousand gallons.
Foutch says the DUD has not raised water rates for most customers since 2007. Customers in the Silver point area (across Hurricane bridge) have not seen a DUD rate increase since 2004. Foutch says in order to provide service to the Silver Point area, the DeKalb Utility District has to purchase water from Baxter, which buys its water from the City of Cookeville. Because it costs more for the DUD to deliver water to the Silver Point area, customers there are under a different rate structure.
For example, a customer in the Silver Point service area who uses 6,000 gallons of water per month will see their bill increase from $60.00 to $71.60 plus tax.
Basic rates for Silver Point area customers who use up to 2,000 gallons per month will go from $20.00 to $26.70, effective with bills due on July 10th. For monthly usage above 2,000 gallons up to 5,000 gallons, the costs will be an extra $11.10 per thousand, an increase of $1.10 per thousand. Customers (Silver Point area) who use more than 5,000 gallons per month will pay an extra $11.60 per thousand, an increase of $1.60 per thousand gallons.
Effective July 1st, water customers in the Gassaway area will be served by the DeKalb Utility District instead of the City of Woodbury. Foutch says Woodbury, which also gets it’s water from DUD, currently provides service to the Gassaway area, but under an agreement with Woodbury, DUD will take on about eighty customers in the Gassaway area and serve them directly.
The current rate structure for Gassaway customers will mostly remain unchanged. Customers who use up to 2,000 gallons per month will continue to pay a minimum bill of $18.55. For monthly usage above 2,000 up to 5,000 gallons, the costs will be additional $7.15 per thousand. The DUD will be adding a third tier rate for Gassaway customers who use more than 5,000 gallons per month, $7.55 per thousand (over 5,000 gallons).