Bexley residents will see a 3% increase in their water bills come January, if Bexley City Council approves legislation that was introduced at its Oct. 29 meeting.

The proposed rate increase is due to the fact that Bexley's water is supplied by the city of Columbus, Bexley Mayor Ben Kessler said.

"The increase in water and sewer rates is a direct pass-through of Columbus' increase," he said.

According to Ordinance 35-19, the rate that Bexley would charge after Jan. 1 would be $61.40 per 1,000 cubic feet, up from the current rate of $59.61 per 1,000 cubic feet. The sewer rate would be $77.46 per 1,000 cubic feet, up from the current rate of $75.20 per 1,000 cubic feet.

The legislation also states 5.06% of residents' combined water and sewer bills would go toward replacing aging water lines and 1.5% of combined water and sewer bills would go toward upgrading sewer lines.

According to a report the city submitted to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency in 2014, repair and replacement costs for Bexley's water and sewer system would total approximately $60.7 million over the next 40 years. The city estimates it would be able to pay for the repairs based on current projections, since $79.1 million would be available in total water and sewer capital funding over the next 40 years.

Council members are scheduled to have a second reading of the legislation at their Tuesday, Nov. 12, meeting. The third and final reading of the legislation is tentatively scheduled for Nov. 26.

For more information about the proposed 2020 rates, call the city's Service Department at 614-559-4220 or go to bexley.org.

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