Water rates on the rise for Johnson City

By Erika Mahoney

Water rates on the rise for Johnson City

February 20, 2013 Updated Feb 20, 2013 at 12:52 AM EDT

Johnson City, NY (WBNG Binghamton) After seven years of flat water rates, Village of Johnson City Mayor Greg Deemie is telling residents: It's time to face the music.

Deemie said the an increase is necessary because the village is approximately $800,000 behind the amount of money it should collect from its water service.

Customers will see an increase of $10 on the base rate of 1,000 cubic feet of water used.

That means the cost is going from $20 to $30 for customers inside the village, and from $30 to $40 for customers outside the village.

For every 100 cubic feet of water used in addition to the first 1,000 cubic feet, the cost per 100 cubic feet will increase from $1.68 to $2.25 for customers living inside the village.

The cost will increase from $2.27 to $3 outside the village.

Deemie says approximately 80 percent of village residents use more than 1,000 cubic feet of water.

"It's a minimal increase," Deemie said. "I mean it is an increase and I understand how people feel about that, but it's something that's necessary. It hasn't been done in seven years. We should have been doing it on a gradual basis over the years."

Deemie also said the sliding scale, which is based on use, is going away.

A public hearing on the new rates is set for March 5.

In the meantime, Deemie said he and the board will work to lowering the rate increases.

The new rates will take effect April 1.