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Birmingham approves water, sewer rate increase

By Grace Lovins

Birmingham city commissioners unanimously approved an additional water and sewer rate change for the 2023-2024 fiscal year on Monday, May 22, with water rates increasing 8.1 percent and sewer rates, 5.3 percent.

The city had reviewed rate changes at a budget hearing on Saturday, April 29, but had been waiting on final numbers from the Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner.

The commission held a public hearing on the proposed budget for the next fiscal year on Monday, May 8, approving a sewage disposal increase of over $116,000 and a storm water increase of about $61,600.

Finance director Mark Gerber stated that the city met with the Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner and is proposing to increase the rates based on that discussion. Storm water rates will increase $34 per ESWU, or equivalent storm water unit, for the Evergreen-Farmington sewage disposal district and $20 per ESWU for Southeast Oakland sewage disposal district.

As discussed during the budget hearing, water rates will increase 8.1 percent, amounting to just over $6 per 1,000 gallons of water used. Sewer rates are set to increase 5.3 percent, raising the cost to $9.79 per 1,000 gallons of water used. The rate increase for sewer, according to the city stems from increased costs of sewage disposal and funds needed for sewer capital improvement projects.

Commissioners voted 7-0 to approve the water and sewer rate changes. The new rates will take effect in July 2023 with the start of the new city fiscal year.


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