Sewer bills increasing in new year

by Laura Freeman | Reporter Published:

Hudson -- Almost 2,200 households in the city will see an increase on their sewer bills -- most of them about $5/month -- beginning Jan. 1.

Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District customers will see a separate line item on their quarterly bill for the storm water fee implemented Jan. 1, 2013, said Jennifer Elting, NEORSD spokesperson. The fee is determined by how much impervious surface -- rooftop, driveway and patio -- is on the property.

The new fee would impact about 2,178 residential customers -- about 30 percent of the total households in the city -- and 214 commercial customers in Hudson.

Most customers are in the second tier, for those with between 2,000 square feet and 4,000 square feet of impervious surface, and will pay $5.05 per month or $15.15 per quarter.

Residents with more than 4,000 square feet of impervious surface are in tier 3 and will pay $9.09 per month or $27.27 per quarter.

A resident with less than 2,000 square feet of impervious surface is in tier 1 and will pay $3.03 per month or $9.09 per quarter.

NEORSD sent out letters to Summit County customers the first week in December informing them of the increase. They can go online at www.neorsd.org-findmyfee and enter a home address to find out what tier the property falls in and what the monthly fee will be.

About 25 percent of the fees collected from Hudson customers will be returned in a form of a grant to pay for Hudson storm water projects, according to Elting.

The city is estimating $108,000 a year from NEORSD for its projects. Hudson appealed a Cuyahoga County judge's ruling to pay the storm water fee. The judge allotted 25 percent instead of 7.5 percent of the fees collected to go toward regional projects.

The storm water fees will help fund the Regional Storm Water Management Program, which identifies $220 million of sewer and storm water improvement projects, and detailed planning on some projects has already begun, according to the NEORSD.

NEORSD is still working on a list of projects it will pursue in 2013, Elting said.

The city of Hudson has no authority over the NEORSD rates, fees, programs or policies. NEORSD can be contacted at 216-881-8247.

Recent city increases

The city increased its sewer rates by 10 percent and water rates by 5 percent in July 2012, and customers will see a similar increase next year.

The $5 per month sewer, and separate $5 per month water capital replacement and repair fee, would begin in July 2013, according to Communications Manager Jody Roberts.

The increased charges for operating are necessary to keep up with increased costs, Roberts said. The capital fees would go to help repair and replace the aging infrastructure.

The average residential sewer rate increased from $53.15 to $58.47 per month in 2012 and will see an average increase of $5.85 in July 2013, according to Hudson Finance Director Jeff Knoblauch.

The average water rate will increase from $33.39 in 2012 to $35.06 per month in 2013, he said.

The rates hikes will also cover increased charges by the Regional Sewer District, which treats Hudson's sewage, Roberts said.

Email: lfreeman@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9434

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