Raleigh delays tiered water rates
Posted October 20, 2009 4:12 p.m. EDT
Updated October 20, 2009 5:59 p.m. EDT
Raleigh, N.C. — The municipal water system won't start charging people based on their usage until next summer, officials said Tuesday.
Tiered water rates, which carry a higher cost for above-average consumption, were supposed to be implemented in December, but the City Council voted to delay the program until next July to test a billing system that was installed to handle the new rate structure.
The city decided last year to implement the tiered rates as a way to encourage water conservation during a record drought.
The city will continue bimonthly billing for water and sewer service through July 5, 2010, when monthly billing will begin.
In place of the tiered water rates, the City Council voted 5-3 to tentatively approve an amended water and sewer rate structure that includes a 17 percent rate increase approved in April.
The council is expected to take a final vote on the amended rates at its Nov. 3 meeting.
The City Council also voted Tuesday to reverse a planned annexation in northeast Raleigh.
The Berkshire Downs neighborhood, which is located off Perry Creek Road east of Capital Boulevard, has fought the city's effort to annex it. Residents argued that, with the down economy, they couldn't afford the cost of added property taxes and new water and sewer lines.