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City Council Approves Water, Sewer Rate Increase

The new $52 base rate is effective on the next billing cycle.

Manassas Park City Council voted 6-1 Tuesday to revise the rates the city charges for sewer and water, increasing the base rate by about $30 to $52 a month for each residential and commercial customer.

Councilman Preston Banks was the only one to oppose the amendment to the ordinance, casting his “nay” vote before Mayor Frank Jones could even ask for it.

Banks said he interjected because he just wanted to make sure he voted.

He voted against the ordinance because he thinks there may be other answers to the city’s water and sewer problems, Banks said on Tuesday.

“I think there’s other solutions we could explore, such as state grants for our improvements to the system and a regional water solution of joining with Prince William County or even Fairfax County,” Banks said after the meeting.

The governing body held several public hearings on the matter and feels that the new water and sewer rate is in the best interest of the city and its residents, according to city documents.

During those public hearings, .

The city will apply the new rate on the next billing cycle.

The money from the new base fee will be used

Manassas Park doesn’t produce its own water, but buys it from Manassas and Prince William County, which buys the water from Fairfax County.

The money will also be used to pay the debts belonging to the Upper Occoquan Service Authority (UOSA), the entity that handles the city’s sewer.

Manassas Park owns a little more than 5 percent of UOSA. The rest is owned by Manassas, Prince William and Fairfax Counties.

Manassas Park has to pay UOSA some $1.5 million this year for its bonds, Manassas Park City Manager James "Jim" Zumwalt said in an earlier report.

That amount will increase by $100,000 every year until it reaches a plateau, he said.

MPSince03 May 16, 2012 at 02:34 PM
An increase when we already pay exorbitant rates? This should help accelerate foreclosures, increase late fee revenue, and further discourage small business owners from starting a business in the city. Awesome job.
Concerned Citizen May 18, 2012 at 02:19 AM
I guess it wouldn't be so bad ....the increase I mean, if it was actually safe to drink the water straight from the tap....but as it stands, we spend a fortune for special filters bc of how unsafe the water was for years.....the levels of the chemical trihalomethane (the spelling could be off) were too high and it was a danger for the elderly and children to drink it ........why do we have to pay for something that is questionable to drink? How many residents filter out the water or use bottle water....has that been looked into? How poor the quality of our water really is..........
Parkie2000 May 18, 2012 at 05:29 PM
Too bad our "esteemed" leaders didn't apply rate increases incrementally over the years instead of waiting and jumping it up "just a dollar a day" - Maybe it's just a dollar a day to them, to me and many residents it's another $30 a month on an already strained budget!
Bloomie May 18, 2012 at 06:44 PM
I agree. Next they'll be telling us they forgot to reserve funds to repave the roads, so they'll need to increase our property taxes, by just a "dollar a day". Whoever is in charge for managing the infrastructure should have resigned by now.
MPSince03 July 10, 2012 at 12:49 PM
My first bill went up $50 so the $1 a day projected increase must be for people who shower once a week. Big thanks again to those responsible for managing us in to this disaster. You might want to consider installing a coin counting machine at city hall to help those bringing in buckets of pennies and nickels to scrape up enough money to keep the water on.

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