Savannah City Fees Going Up in 2014 - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Savannah City Fees Going Up in 2014

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SAVANNAH, GA -

Where is your money going?

If you live in Savannah, it could soon be going to more city fees.  That's because of changes in the proposed 2014 budget.

The 2014 budget includes several changes and increases in fees, among those an average of $1.50 extra in your monthly water and sewer bill.

City leaders say the raise is necessary to cover costs and pay for $135 million in EPD mandated improvements to the city's water system over the next five years.

"We are completely a self enterprising fund," explained John Sawyer of Savannah's Water and Sewer Department. "Which means all the money we get come from the consumption charges that individuals pay or the connection charges that businesses pay. so we are a completely self funded enterprise."

The water and sewer department is self sufficient, that means they have pay for everything through bonds and revenue from your water and sewer bills.

Sawyer says they want folks to pay a little now instead of a lot later.

"What we've done historically is to look at least five years ahead, at what's taking place, and then to make small increases. We know they are pretty much annual but we would rather have a annual small increase than to go 2-3 years without an increase and see a 12-15 percent increase."

The average rate after the increase would be about $41 a month, that's still means Savannah has the lowest water and sewer rates in all of Georgia.

Among the other changes proposed in the budget, a $5 increase in the price of a parking ticket.

That's from $15 to $20

The minimum cost of a building permit will also be climbing
as will your sanitation fees.

Those are going up a $1.50 every month.

That's to cover the cost of increasing the size of the city's landfill, which is close to full.

That addition will cost about $17 million dollars.

This may not be the last increase in water and sewer rates we are talking about.

The city's plan would be the raise rates another $1.50 a month in 2015 through 2018.

But that would be up to council to decide in next year's budget discussion.

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