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A word from the Mayor

POMEROY–As we begin 2024, I would like to extend my appreciation to all for the privilege of serving as Mayor of Pomeroy. I will endeavor to make the most of the year ahead, working with many fresh faces on the City County Council eager to do the same. We, along with our talented Administrative Staff, will focus on providing the very best services to our residents, addressing the issues in our community that have presented challenges to our city in the past while staying committed to preserving the character and identity of our town.

I would also like to recognize Charlotte Baker and the East Washingtonian for giving me the opportunity to periodically address the citizens of Pomeroy. The paper's support and coverage of our community and events is outstanding. I hope to use this space to provide additional detail and information from City Hall. Our goal is to keep residents informed and provide a degree of transparency that will benefit us all.

Your input and opinions are important to us. That was one of the driving forces behind the establishment of the five standing committees at the last meeting. As pointed out in the newspaper article last week, each of these committees will have a Council member serving as Chair, and an additional Council member to support the Committee's work.

These Council committees are policy review and discussion arms of the City that have been created to assist the Council in examining issues that may come before it in greater depth and detail. Committees will study issues and develop recommendations for consideration by the Council. It is important to note that these committees will not take binding action on behalf of the City.

An issue that action was taken on at the City Council meeting earlier this month was the approval of Ordinance 937, which made an adjustment to water and sewer rates and fees for 2024.

Please note, this Ordinance does not change the water rates established by the City Council in 2023. The amount of money you will be paying for your quarterly water and sewer bill will stay the same.

This Ordinance authorizes an adjustment made to the appearance of your quarterly water bill. In prior billing cycles, your water bill would read $135 per quarter. Future water bills will have two categories. The quarterly rate for basic water service is set at $101.25. There is now an additional category, a quarterly water availability fee, which is set at $33.75.

The quarterly water availability fee will apply to all residents with access to water, regardless if their water meter is turned on or not. This is a fixed monthly fee, determined by the size of the water meter installed at your property. This fee helps more equitably distribute service costs that are not related to the volume of water used, such as bill production, customer service, water service inspections, and meter reading, maintenance, and replacement.

Our thinking is that the quality and efficiency of our water supply is a total community effort. Even those property owners who are not using water, currently, naturally benefit from reliable water availability. These fees are not used for other projects; they go directly into the water account and are used to maintain the system.

Ordinance 937 also amended your quarterly sewer bill to reflect the same changes, for the same reason. The quarterly rate for basic sewer service is $91.48, and the sewer availability fee is $30.50.