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Carroll County Times

Water, sewer rates increase for county users

"If it's yellow, let it mellow" could soon become a mantra for residents using Carroll County's water and sewer systems when rate increases begin July 1.

The Carroll County Board of Commissioners voted 4-1 Tuesday to increase water and sewer rates by 9 percent and 3 percent, respectively.

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Based on the average customer, increases would amount to an additional $7 to $10 per quarter for water users and $4 to $5 per quarter for sewer users, according to Comptroller Rob Burk. The average residential customer uses between 28,000 and 40,000 gallons of water per quarter for water and sewer.

Commissioner Haven Shoemaker, R-District 2, voted against the rate increases, noting that the sewer bill for his Hampstead home has doubled over the past 10 years.

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The increases are necessary because of inflation as well as increased costs from service and resource providers to the county, Burk said.

Baltimore plans to charge the county more for the water Carroll uses from Liberty Reservoir.

Maryland Environmental Service, which operates the Freedom Wastewater Treatment Plant, also plans to increase the cost of its services, Burk has said.

Approximately 8,323 customers use the county's water system while 8,891 customers use the county's sewer system, Burk has said.

Water and sewer rates were last increased for Fiscal Year 2011. The water and sewer rates increased by 8.5 percent and 16 percent, respectively, in FY11.


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