Water, wastewater rates set to climb 7% in 2013, 2014

Mark Brownlee
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The City of Ottawa is proposing to increase the rate at which businesses are charged for drinking water and wastewater by seven per cent over the next two years.

(Stock image)

Tuesday’s announcement reflects a new multi-year approach to setting rates. The city decided last year to significantly increase the amount of money it’s charging for those services over the next couple of years to help replace aging pipe infrastructure and to help clean up the Ottawa River.

“Ratepayers will know in advance what rates they will be paying and (this) provides them with more certainty when they’re selecting their finances or their rate levels,” said Maria McRae, the chair of the committee responsible for the rates, at a briefing at Ottawa City Hall Tuesday.

“They’ll know from year-to-year what to expect.”

The increase means the cost of service will go to $715 for the average residential user in 2013 then to $765 in 2014, staff said.

Water and wastewater rates are the same for businesses as they are for residents, said Marian Simulik, the city treasurer. Most businesses end up using less water than residences, she said.

The rate increase proposals will next go to the city’s environment committee.

Geographic location: Ottawa River

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