County to give last presentations on 14-percent water, sewer rate hike

Montgomery County water and sewer customers have a few more opportunities remaining to hear from officials about why rates are increasing 14 percent next year.

The county will give the last four of 11 presentations in Clayton, Jefferson Twp., Moraine and Washington Twp. at regularly scheduled council and township meetings over the next two weeks.

MORE: Report claims Ohio one of worst states for water quality offenses

The rate increase is coming because of deteriorating infrastructure that has resulted in higher costs for maintenance and new construction coupled with a lack of state or federal funding, according to county officials.

“It may appear to be a relatively large increase,” County Administrator Joe Tuss previously said. “But when you look at where we’ve been from an historic standpoint, it’s about catching up and generating the revenue we need to invest.”

The average Montgomery County residential customer, now paying about $170, will see quarterly bills rise about $24 next year. In addition to the 14-percent hike in 2018, rates will go up 5.6 percent each year after through 2022, the county announced Nov. 9.

Montgomery County rate increases have averaged about 2.5 percent since 2007, which is below the state average of 4 percent, according to Ohio Environmental Protection Agency data.

Officials estimate about $750 million will need to be spent over the next 20 years to maintain and replace aging portions of the system that serves about 81,000 customers.

MORE: Are the drugs we’re taking — and flushing down the toilet — hurting our water?

A larger portion of a customer’s bill will be the fixed charge, going from 20 percent to 40 percent, while consumption charges move from 80 to 60 percent. The increased fixed charge will provide more stable, long-term financing needed to upgrade and maintain the system the county values at $3.1 billion, said Pat Turnbull, the county’s Environmental Services director.

Turnbull said the county spends roughly $2 million annually to repair 300 or more water main breaks on the system primarily installed 60-70 years ago.

“The water mains are breaking more frequently. The sewer lines are cracking more frequently,” he said. “We are just reaching that point — similar to the roof on your house — when you’re having to patch leaks all the time, you get to a place where it’s time to put a new roof on”

More: Greene County officials respond to water bill complaints

While Montgomery County purchases water pumped by the city of Dayton, the county maintains a distribution system of 1,400 miles of water mains that provide drinking water and fire prevention for about 250,000 residents. The system also has 1,200 miles of sewer line and two wastewater plants.

County officials gave the presentation previously at meetings in Butler Twp., Centerville, Harrison Twp., Kettering, Miami Twp., Riverside and Trotwood.

Montgomery County water rate public presentations

Presentations will be made at regular township and city council meetings.

- Washington Twp., 7:30 p.m., Dec. 4

Township Offices, 8200 McEwen Road

- Jefferson Twp., 7 p.m., Dec. 5

Administration Building, One Business Park Dr., Dayton

- Clayton, 7:30 p.m., Dec. 7

Government Center, 6996 Taywood Rd., Englewood

- Moraine, 6 p.m., Dec. 14

Municipal Building, 4200 Dryden Rd.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Politics

Russia investigation: Special counsel Mueller subpoenas Trump Organization
Russia investigation: Special counsel Mueller subpoenas Trump Organization

  Special counsel Robert Mueller has subpoenaed the Trump Organization for documents as part of his investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and its possible ties to President Donald Trump and his associates, according to multiple reports. The subpoena is the first directly connected to one of Trump’s businesses...
Secretary of state, CIA director nominees face probable backlash in Senate
Secretary of state, CIA director nominees face probable backlash in Senate

The confirmation of President Donald Trump's picks for secretary of state and CIA director is likely to be hampered but not stymied by a mostly partisan backlash to their records in the administration and the decision that led to their nominations - the termination of Rex Tillerson for being one of the few Cabinet members, Democrats argued Tuesday...
Facebook, Twitter, Google CEOs face calls to testify to Congress
Facebook, Twitter, Google CEOs face calls to testify to Congress

Social media giants that have acknowledged Russians exploited their platforms ahead of the 2016 election face renewed bipartisan demands to explain to Congress what they're doing to counter abuse of their networks ahead of this year's congressional midterms.  Democratic Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia, the vice chairman of the Intelligence Committee...
We looked at almost 100 leaders who tried Xi Jinping-style power grabs. Here’s how they turned out.
We looked at almost 100 leaders who tried Xi Jinping-style power grabs. Here’s how they turned out.

Xi Jinping plays the long game.  The 64-year-old Chinese president is only half finished with what should have been a 10-year term, but he's already tossed term limits aside, and with them the rules and norms that have governed China's leadership since 1982.  The National People's Congress made it official last weekend, passing a set of constitutional...
No, Conor Lamb didn’t run as ‘Republican-lite’
No, Conor Lamb didn’t run as ‘Republican-lite’

On Wednesday morning, I returned from Pennsylvania to an entirely different universe: the sidewalk outside the House GOP's weekly meeting. One by one, Republicans in both safe seats and swing seats explained that the apparent defeat of their candidate in the 18th Congressional District — an area Donald Trump had carried by 20 points in 2016 &mdash...
More Stories