BOWIE, TX (KAUZ) - Water and sewer rates are going up in Bowie and many residents are not happy about it.
At Tuesday's city council meeting Mayor Scott Davis said this increase must be done. He said the city needs the money to take care of problems like busted water lines and pumps going out.
City leaders said by raising both the water and sewer base rates, for those who get water from the city, will help with the repairs and improvements that need to be made, and even allow the city to start an infrastructure account.
"So that in the event of a major collapse or major problem we do have some funds that are for that, and we aren't scrambling around looking for money," said Mayor Scott.
Mayor Davis said the money coming in from the water rate increase will go into that infrastructure account and have to be approved by city leaders before it is spent.
He said the proposal they went with is the best one. Adding although it does not offer electrical rebates, something many residents say they need, he believes it will help them city leaders achieve all their goals.
"It's just a fair rate, everybody is paying the same rate," said Mayor Scott. "I am actually a local restaurant owner, and my rates are going to go up more than anybody's in town."
However, residents like Tami Buckmaster said a lot of people who live in Bowie cannot afford to pay more for their utilities, especially with the high price of electricity. Although she does agree the town's water and sewer rates are low and the infrastructure needs some work.
"All of those things are true," said Buckmaster. "And our rates do need to go up, but we do want to see a decrease on the electricity side."
Mayor Davis said this increase is long overdue adding the Bowie's sewer budget is about $300,000 in the red. The city expects it will take a year to get that balanced out.
The water base rate is $20 for 2,000 gallons, additional gallons will be .0065 cents.
The sewer base rate is also going up to $20 for 2,000 gallons, additional gallons will be .0045 cents.