KBA News caught up with Clark County Utilities Director Chuck Bauer recently to learn more about the rate hike for sewer and water in our area. 

Bauer explained that because the Utilities Department is totally funded by the users of the services and does not get any money from the County general fund, his office must review the department budget each year to see if an increase is needed to continue to provide services and equipment for the department.

In making decisions on infrastructure items and equipment, Bauer explained that his office does a five year projection to help plan for the necessary items to keep his operation updated.  Rather than waiting to spike rates to cover costs over a long period, his department looks at the yearly costs of doing business and makes a decision on rate increases which are typically low. 

Residential customers in the western areas of Clark County that are customers of the Utilities Department will see a 3 percent hike in rates this year.  Businesses are also going to see the same increase in rates for services of sewer and water.  In 2017, Bauer noted that the rate increase was 2 and a half percent.

Taking the typical bill from the Green Meadows subdivision in Mad River Township as an example, Bauer noted that the average customer in Mad River and Bethel Township  uses about 600 cu ft of water or 4,500 gallons in a month.  That means an average increase in billing of about $1.82 per month for sewer and water. 

“We don’t take it lightly when we decided on an increase” said Bauer of the decision to change rates for 2018.  Residents in Bethel Township will also see the same increase in rates explained Bauers.

Clark County is the largest customer of the Village of Enon who provides water to the county agency.  With the Village Finance Committee preparing to review rates and possibly pass along an increase, Bauer explained that any increase would be looked at during the end of 2018 review and then if necessary passed along to county customers next year.