County board to consider water rate increase

By Andy Winemiller -

DOBSON — County commissioners will consider increasing rates in two water and sewer districts Monday evening.

In a memorandum to the Surry County Board of Commissioners, Finance Officer Sarah Bowen has relayed a plan which would eliminate the need for county officials to subsidize the operations of the Elkin-Gentry Road Water and Sewer District with general fund monies.

The plan — which would initiate a 7-percent increase each year for a period of five years — would greatly reduce the amount of funding needed to subsidize the operations of the Flat Rock-Bannertown water and sewer district.

The plan would gradually increase the residential rate in the Flat Rock district from a base rate for water services from $20.30 to $28.47. The rate per 1,000 gallons of water used would rise from $4.46 to $4.66.

In the Elkin district, residential base water rates would rise from $22 to $30.86 throughout the course of the next five years. The cost for water per 1,000 gallons would increase from $4.95 to $6.94.

Commercial rates would increase by about 140 percent in both districts.

Commissioners will also put their eyes on an ordinance authorizing county officials to finance $5 million associated with the sanitary sewer project in the Interstates Water and Sewer District.

Financing proposals from various financial institutions seeking to lend money for the project were not available as of late last week, according to Assistant Finance Officer Ben Pratt’s correspondence with the board. However, the closing date for bids was Thursday. Thus, commissioners may have proposals before them Monday evening.

The board will also consider an agreement with the N.C. Department of Transportation (DOT), which was initiated by County Commissioner Jimmy Miller prior to his resignation from the board.

The agreement would allow the DOT to landscape the property in adjoining on- and off-ramps at the I-77 and N.C. 89 interchange. Under the draft agreement, the county would only have to provide funds should the project cost exceed $50,000.

Facilities Director Don Mitchell will also present bids for completion of renovations at the historic courthouse to board members.

Monday’s board meeting begins at 6 p.m. and will be held at the Surry County Government Center located at 118 Hamby Road in Dobson.

By Andy Winemiller

Andy is a staff writer and may be reached at 415-4698.

Andy is a staff writer and may be reached at 415-4698.

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