The Erie County Water Authority approved its 2019 budget, which includes a rate hike for water rates.
The cost will increase six centers per 1,000 gallons. This amounts to about $1.20 per quarter, or $4.80 per year for the average residential customer using 80,000 gallons a year. These rates go into effect January 1, 2019.
EWCA Chairman Jerome Schad says this is a "fiscally responsible budget with a most rate increase." The increase meets inflation costs but also goes into funding for infrastructure repairs.
The 2019 budget includes $41.3 million for infrastructure upgrades, including the following:
- $25.5 million for water distribution and transmission mains
- $5 million for a new electrical substation at the Ball Pump STation
- $2.6 million for technical system upgrades
- $2.5 million for new remote radio read water meters
- $2 million for upgrades at Sturgeon Point and Van De Water Treatment Plants
- $500,000 for security enhancements
These measures are part of an overall five-year plan that would cost $181 million.