Sewer, water rate increases proposed for Crothersville residents


When Crothersville residents receive their May bills, they may see increases in their water and sewer base rates.

After the town’s current rates were studied by Steve Brock with Therber Brock and Associates LLC in Carmel, it was recommended to raise the rates to cover operating costs and maintenance for the town’s facilities.

The proposed base rate for water is $21.85 for those with a 5/8- or 3/4-inch meter based on 2,500 gallons. The current rate is $21.69, so that will be a 16-cent increase.

The proposed base rate for sewer is $13.38 for the same size meters. The current rate is $13.02, so that’s a 36-cent increase.

Then each of the next four years, the water rates would bump up 17 or 16 cents, while the sewer rates would go up 37 cents in 2020 and 2021, 39 cents in 2022 and 40 cents in 2023.

Unmetered users could see their sewer base rate go from $58.16 to $61.59 this year. Then it will continue to rise between $1.69 and $1.84 in the following four years.

Water and sewer rates also could increase for those with meters ranging from 1 to 6 inches.

“When we get these raises, we’re still just going to be breaking even,” Crothersville Town Council President Danieta Foster said during a meeting earlier this month.

“We don’t do (the increases) just for the fun of it,” she told residents attending the meeting. “We pay for water bills, too. Remember, we’re not doing it just to get to you. We have to pay them, too.”

Communities that own and operate their sewer and water departments have to maintain infrastructure so it works efficiently and lasts for as long as possible. The time comes to repair or replace lines, pumps, lift stations and other resources, and those costs continue to rise.

The town has had a water rate increase each year since 2015, but the sewer rate hadn’t increased until a couple of years ago.

Water, sewer, stormwater and trash collection fees are combined into one monthly utility bill in Crothersville. Water and sewer fees are based on the amount of gallons used, while trash is $10.50 and stormwater is $3 for residences.

In 2017, Brock told the town council increases were needed for water and sewer rates, and members agreed to spread that out over five years instead of all at once.

Earlier this month, the council unanimously approved the first reading of ordinances to amend the rates. The second and final reading and a public hearing will take place during the next council meeting at 6 p.m. April 2 at the town hall, 111 W. Howard St.

Town resident NaLona Bush told the council she doesn’t have a water bill because she has a well, but she receives a sewer bill. She said she doesn’t understand why she is charged the unmetered base rate for 5,000 gallons because she doesn’t use nearly that much.

“When that was originally started, it was for people out of town that had the sewer but no water, and it was like, ‘We can’t regulate how much of your well water goes down the sewer that we treat, so let’s do a base rate,’” Bush said. “Well, then you just keep raising it, raising it, raising it. There ought to be a stopping point for people with 5,000, 6,000 gallons of water.”

Wastewater Superintendent Mason Boicourt said he has always thought 5,000 gallons is too much based on average use. Bush said when she served as the town’s clerk-treasurer eight years ago, it was based on 4,000 gallons.

Foster said there are around 20 unmetered users who live in town limits.

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What: Crothersville Town Council meeting

When: 6 p.m. April 2

Where: Crothersville Town Hall, 111 E. Howard St.

Who: Open to the public and press

On the agenda: A public hearing for the proposed sewer and water rate increases will be conducted at the beginning of the meeting, followed by other business

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Proposed water rates for Crothersville

Size of meter;2019;2020;2021;2022;2023

⅝ inch;$21.85;$22.02;$22.18;$22.35;$22.52

¾ inch;$21.85;$22.02;$22.18;$22.35;$22.52

1 inch;$43.87;$44.20;$44.53;$44.86;$45.20

1¼ inches;$81.63;$82.24;$82.86;$83.48;$84.10

1½ inches;$201;$202.50;$204.02;$205.55;$207.09

2 inches;$253.45;$255.35;$257.26;$259.19;$261.14

3 inches;$305.90;$308.19;$310.50;$312.83;$315.18

4 inches;$408.08;$411.14;$414.22;$417.33;$420.46

6 inches;$509.98;$513.80;$517.65;$521.54;$525.45

Proposed sewer rates for Crothersville

Size of meter;2019;2020;2021;2022;2023

⅝ inch;$13.38;$13.75;$14.12;$14.51;$14.91

¾ inch;$13.38;$13.75;$14.12;$14.51;$14.91

1 inch;$30.03;$30.86;$31.71;$32.58;$33.48

1¼ inches;$45.99;$47.26;$48.56;$49.89;$51.26

1½ inches;$65.11;$66.90;$68.74;$70.63;$72.58

2 inches;$109.81;$112.83;$115.93;$119.12;$122.40

3 inches;$248.01;$254.83;$261.84;$269.04;$276.43

4 inches;$428.84;$440.63;$452.75;$465.20;$477.99

6 inches;$971.24;$997.95;$1,025.40;$1,053.60;$1,082.57

Unmetered users charge per month