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COLUMN SERIES: Comparing Utility Rates

By Terry Arps

The following is the THIRD in a series of submissions from Terry Arps, a member of the Luther Town Board of Trustees, about raising utility rates for the Town of Luther. Rate hikes are proposed for water, sewer and trash services.

Our Town Manager saved me a gob of time by locating a list of the service rates being charged by nearby towns that had been compiled some ten months ago. They have not been updated but I believe it is unlikely that rates in other towns are going down. You will note that another town might beat Luther rates in one category, only to exceed them significantly in another to make up the difference. 

LutherWellstonHarrahJonesSpencerChoctawMustang
water$16/2,000$20/1,000$19.22/2000$13.71/1,000$18.28/1,000$15.11/2,000$21.78/2,000
sewer$10/2,000$15$23.64/2,000$13.71/1,000$10.45/1,0000$!5.92/2,000$10,80/2,000
trash$14.30$15$15.56$24.11$22.39$15.64$18.23
Research via Town of Luther staff, rates effective 2019.

The unfortunate fact is, even if we were in the middle of the pack, our Town would need to address the disparity between public works revenues and public works costs.      

 It’s really not much different than our own homes.  We can’t over spend our income flows continuously without getting into a bind.  In consideration of the public, the Board of Trustees has resisted rate adjustments for Public Works services for some time and now we have to do something to keep our Public Works Authority from getting in a bind.

Arps was appointed to the Luther Town Board in October 2019

The Board will be voting on the Rate adjustment at our next meeting on Tuesday, June 9, at 7 pm at Town Hall. I have written in the past, before I was on the Board that the Town meetings are informative, instructional and sometimes amusing.  I encourage you to attend the meetings, offer constructive comments, suggest to the board the solution that we hadn’t considered to a problem facing the town, and see how we’re working to solve all the issues that are facing Luther.

Part One
Part Two
Luther Hardware

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