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Lacombe approves new wastewater & solid waste utility rates

Water FAQ Landing 

Lacombe, Alberta (January 24, 2018) –At their regular meeting Monday, Council approved Bylaw 393.1, the Utility Rate Bylaw, for the supply of water, wastewater and solid waste services to residents and customers. The bylaw is effective January 1, 2018.

"With the upcoming completion and commissioning of the regional wastewater transmission system, residents will see ongoing increases in municipal wastewater rates,” said Mayor Grant Creasey. “This is an unfortunate reality we face in order to sustainably address our critical wastewater needs, and to accommodate future growth.”

“The combined utility bill increase for the year for an average household will be $18.01 a month,” said Financial Services Manager Justin de Bresser. “Water and residential solid waste rates have stayed the same; however, apartments had a slight increase in the solid waste rate.”

Water
The proposed monthly water rate for 2018 will remain at $26.77 per month.  The per unit consumption rate will remain at $2.47 per cubic.  The base fee is used to cover fixed costs such as administration and distribution costs.  The per unit consumption rate is intended to cover the cost of water purchased from the regional water commission as well as to account for water loss in the system.

 In 2017, the City implemented a new bulk water dispensary system, which enables customers to use credit cards at the terminal as well as a prepaid account system. As a result, bulk water will increase to $4.50 per cubic meter.

Wastewater
The waste water rates reflect the change in rate structure first adopted in 2012. The current model includes a flat monthly fee and a per consumption fee similar to the water rate model.  For 2018, both the monthly rate and the consumption will increase.  The rates for 2018 will be $20.00 per month, which is an increase of $0.22 per customer per month, and covers fixed costs of the utility such as administration, debt payments and some operations.

The per unit consumption rate for 2018 will increase to $2.15 per cubic meter of effluent. This covers the variable costs of treatment charged by the North Red Deer Regional Wastewater Commission.

In 2016, the city started put money aside to allow for the accumulation of funds for the future regional sewer line back to Red Deer. Beginning in 2018, the City will start to deploy these funds over the next three years to smooth out future increases as Lacombe moves onto the North Red Deer Regional Wastewater Service Commission Line. The estimated rates are listed below and will be reviewed each year with the operating budget.

                                          2019                     2020                     2021

Fixed                                $20.00                  $20.00                  $20.00
Consumption                    $2.90                    $2.97                    $3.18

Solid Waste
Residential solid waste rates will not see an increase in 2018. Rates for apartments with more than four separate dwelling units will increase $1.03 to $17.27 per unit per month.

Commercial solid waste rates will increase $9.91 to $109.89 per month, per customer, per bin. Commercial cardboard pick up will now be $99.89 per month, per customer, per bin. Additional unscheduled pickups will be $54.94 per pickup.