Water Woes: Rate Hikes May Be On Tap

Officials say money needed to update system

For the second year in a row, it looks like D.C. residents will face a major rate hike for their water service.

According to the Washington Post, the D.C. Water & Sewer Authority has proposed increasing customer water bills about $6.50 a month, for a customer using about 5,000 gallons of water.

The proposed DC Water rate hike is included with the 2012 budget that was passed Thursday.

Last year, the authority raised rates about $8 per month.

Officials said they need the extra money to replace pipes and other aging infrastructure.

"The work we do becomes more expensive every year," D.C. Water General Manager George Hawkins said.

If the rate hike is adopted (perhaps in September), the increase would take effect Oct. 1. 

A series of town hall meetings will be held so customers can weigh in on the proposed rate increase -- as well as other DC Water topics -- even though the budget has already been passed.

The current town hall schedule is below. All meetings will be held from 6:30-8 p.m.:

  • March 8, Ward 3, University of the District of Columbia (Windows Lounge), 4200 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.
  • March 17, Ward 6, Location to be confirmed
  • March 22, Ward 5, Luke C. Moore Academy (auditorium), 1001 Monroe Street, NE
  • March 29, Ward 8, Temple of Praise (Lower Level Fellowship Hall), 700 Southern Avenue, S.E.
  • April 12, Ward 2, Location to be confirmed
  • April 26, Ward 7, Location to be confirmed

In addition, DC Water will hold a public hearing for the 2012 proposed rates on May 11. The time and place has not been announced.

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