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Cottage Grove Water Rate Change Beginning January 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

For More Information Please Contact:
Robin Roland, Finance Director, rroland@cottage-grove.org, 651-458-2832

Cottage Grove Water Rate Change Beginning January 2018 

Cottage Grove, MN – Dec. 21, 2017 – On Dec. 20, the Cottage Grove City Council approved new water and sewer rates which go into effect on Jan. 1.  Residents will see the rate change on their Feb. 15 water bill.  The change is the first year of a two-year phased water and sewer rate increase.

The new rates are based on a tiered usage system. Residential properties that use 0 to 6,000 gallons in a month will be charged $1.18 per 1,000 gallons; 6,000 to 9,000 gallons, $1.44 per 1,000 gallons; 9,000 to 12,000 gallons, $1.83 per $1,000 gallons and over 12,000 gallons, $2.42 per 1,000 gallons.  The higher the usage, the higher cost paid by those customers. 

Nearly two-thirds, or 63%, of users in the City use 6,000 gallons or less of water per month and will see a minimal change in their bill. The monthly water base charge for a typical single-family home will go from $1.50 to $2.25 in 2018, and $3 in 2019.

The rate for multi-family residential, which uses 25 percent less water than a single-family, will go from $1.50 to $1.69 per connection in 2018 and $2.25 per unit in 2019.

Water rates for commercial and irrigation users depends on the meter size. Base rates currently range from $2.25 to $112.50 and will change to $3 to $150 per account.  Water consumption will be billed at the tiered rates above.

Sanitary sewer base rates are also increasing with single and multi-family residential going from $1.75 to $3 in 2018 and $4.25 in 2019. All sewer billing is based on water consumption in the first quarter of the year and will change to $3.45 per 1,000 gallons in 2018 and $3.75 per 1,000 gallons in 2019.

The new rates are a result of a water and sewer rate study that was authorized by Council in April of 2017.  It was in place before the City enacted a watering ban in response to pumping reduction measures to meet new Minnesota Department of Health that health-based values.

The study reviewed the City's operating and capital expenditures for water and sanitary sewer systems and recommended a financial plan and cost-based rates for both systems. It relied on audited financial reporting information and other revenue, expense, and development information.  The study did not consider any future capital expenditures relating to water treatment facilities.

The study resulted in the implementation of fair and equitable water and sanitary sewer rates and rate structures to meet the needs of each system over a five-year period from Jan. 1, 2018, through Dec. 31, 2022 while promoting water conservation in accordance with Minnesota State Statutes and maintaining financial reserves sufficient to provide operational stability.

The City Council City of Cottage Grove has not had a rate increase since 2008.  All new rates can be found on the Cottage Grove website.