04/17/07 — Mount Olive residents to pay more for water

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Mount Olive residents to pay more for water

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on April 17, 2007 1:45 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- Utility bills for Mount Olive residents will increase from $52 a month to $54.50 beginning July 1, town officials said.

The reason for the increase is a 20 percent increase in garbage collection fees charged to the town by Waste Industries over five years, said members of the Mount Olive Town Board.

The utility bill includes water service, along with sewer service and solid waste disposal.

Town officials had considered cutting back on trash pickups, from once a week to once every two weeks but decided instead to increase the fee, said Board Member Jimmy Kornegay, who voted for the water rate increase along with Ray Thompson and Hosea Manley.

"There was no way out. I hate to put this on them, but I didn't feel we could afford to cut back garbage pick-up. I don't think they'd have gone for that. I definitely don't want my garbage to sit by the street for two weeks," he said.

Tom Preston, who voted against the increase with Kenny Talton, said he now agrees with the decision.

He and Talton had wanted to look at the situation for another 30 days and then decide. But budget preparation time was running out, and the action was necessary just to break even, he said.

"I hated it.... But I'm satisfied," Preston said.

The contract with Waste Industries expires in 2009, and town officials will be giving the matter a hard look again next year, board members said.