Sunday, November 21, 2010

Council Meeting, November 22, 2010 - Budget debate.

Some debate is expected as to which option should be adopted by Council. The options presented by the Finance Director are shown on the white table. Council recommended Option 1b. This option would actually charge $3.48 for the first 15 cubic meters and then would sell the rest of the cubic meters at a bargain price of $1.74 (two tier system). Unfair for low users as they would subsidize heavy users. It also contains a very high tax component: about 67% of the base fee is tax.

Option two proposes an access fee of $25 per quarter (
this is the tax component it would include an amortization charge of $18) and the rest of the costs would be divided by the total sewage sold to customers based on the first quarter water use (the actual cost per cubic meter is $3.28).

As the
per household usage is estimated through water use absentee residents who use no water in the first quarter would escape payment. To ensure that those residents also contribute a reasonable sum a 15 cubic meter (another option contemplates 20 m3) mandatory usage fee is incorporated in the base fee. Those using 15 m3 or less quarterly would pay no additional fees. Those exceeding the base volume would be charged the going rate for the additional volumes.

This is very similar to the rate system the city charges except for the fact that our expenses are higher due to the operation and maintenance of our collection system in addition to the treatment and disposal charges levied by the city. The City's sewer rate is based on a twenty m3 base fee at $2.45 per m3 and additional volumes are charged at the same rate. Anyone interested in the debate is welcome to come.


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About Me

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I have been a resident of Coldstream since 1976. I have had 15 years of experience on Council, 3 years as Mayor. As a current Councillor I am working to achieve fair water and sewer rates and to ensure that taxpayers get fair treatment. The current direction regarding water supply is unsustainable and I am doing all I can to get the most cost effective water supply possible.