Officials with the City of Clay continue to examine the best route for utility rate increases in an attempt to eliminate over $90,000 in shortfalls from last fiscal year.
The city council tabled any possible vote during last Tuesday’s meeting. Mayor Jackie Edens said he did not want to call for approval of new rates without the full complement of council members present.
The council spent a lengthy work session in January discussing a variety of scenarios to prevent the city from losing money on utilities. No definite changes came from the meeting, and council members requested additional proposals.
Those possible changes were provided to the council in its regular February meeting. They were taken under advisement with little discussion.
Currently, the city operates on a three-tiered rate schedule for water. The minimum bill is $25.50 for the first 2,000 gallons, with tiers two and three assessing a flat rate for additional 1,000 gallon increments.
The latest proposal would increase the minimum rate by 30% to $33.50, and eliminate the third tier charge. The city estimates a revenue increase of $39,700 annually at current usage.
The council is also considering raising the sewer rate from 75% of a customer’s water bill to 100%. That would bring in an additional eight dollars monthly on minimum usage.
Gas bills would increase from $12 per month to $18 for each meter within city limits. Customers outside the city would pay $22.50 per meter monthly, an increase of $13.50.
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Each individual bill would also be assessed a three dollar maintenance fee. If one customer receives two utility bills, that would include two maintenance charges.
Under the new proposals, the city would pull the utility accounts out of the red. If the council votes to leave sewer rates at 75%, estimated gained revenue would be $159,352. At 100%, the gain would be $169,344.
In other business, the council received a clean opinion on the audit of the city’s 2021-22 fiscal year finances.
The audit was conducted by Mike Overby, CPA. It is the final time he will complete the city’s mandatory annual review, as he is retiring later this year.
Overby reported the city finished the fiscal year with a total government funds balance of $512,646. The bulk of that resided in the general fund, which stood at $312,252 at the of June.
The council voted to approve the second reading of an ordinance that will close an alley that runs between KY 109 and Taylor St. The document will next be filed with the county, and will officially close afterward.
In other business, the council approved the appointments of Jesse Reeves, Mattea Meadows, Samantha Nall, Eric Winebarger, Tammy Smith, and Wade Williams to one-year terms on the park board.