By Glenn Collins
Tuesday, February 9, 2010 | 1:43 PM
|The Upper Bear Creek Water, Sewer, and Fire Protection District's Board, clockwise from front left are Vice-Chairman Charles Smith, Willard Pickard, Royce Mann, Mark Sampson, Secretary-Treasurer Jimmy Elliott, and Chairman Robert Blake, along with Manager Barry Hill|
The Upper Bear Creek Water, Sewer, and Fire Protection District Board held its regular monthly meeting Monday night. At its January meeting, the board voted to increase its rates. The 5.1% rate increase takes effect March 1, 2010.
The board is working on ways to decrease costs, improve the quality of the water, and continue to adhere to government regulations. Robert Blake, Chairman of the district, said “Our goal is to provide good water at a fair price.” Blake added, “If you look at other systems, we sell at a comparative rate.”
The board voted Monday night to test some changes that may lower operational costs. Blake said that over the last five years chemical costs are up 8% annually and utility costs are up 5%.
Mayor Ken Sunseri said that Haleyville's retail customers will not see a rate increase as a result. Haleyville is one of UBCW's customers. The others are Bear Creek and Phil Campbell.
Haleyville's retail customers currently pay $4.01/1000 gallons with a monthly minimum charge of $22.19. Bear Creek and Phil Campbell pay $3.20/1000 gallons with monthly minimums of $18 and $19.90, respectively. Other rates around the area per 1,000 gallons are Hamilton, $3.83; Russelville, $7.60; Double Springs, $6.60; Addison, $6.60; and Franklin County, $8.80.
Water systems are complicated affairs. Water has to enter a system, be treated in that system, then moved to the system out of which you fill your glass, or your pot, or your baby's bottle. These systems must be built, monitored, maintained, improved, and extended. And, these systems must adhere to government regulations.