(Black Press Media file)

(Black Press Media file)

Summerland utility rates expected to rise

Proposed increases would add more than $100 to typical utility bills

Summerland’s water, sewer and electrical rates are expected to increase in 2021.

A report from David Svetlichny, Summerland’s director of finances, is proposing sewer rates to increase by 3.5 per cent, water rates to increase by five per cent and electrical rates to increase by 3.62 per cent.

READ ALSO: Summerland staff reworks budget

READ ALSO: Summerland council revisiting budget

The rate increases mean water a typical Summerland home would see water rates increase from $790 a year in 2020 to $830 a year in 2021, for a $39.50 increase.

Sewer rates would increase from $409 a year to $423 a year, rising by $14.30.

Electrical rates would increase from $1,509 a year to $1,563 a year, for an increase of $54.61 a year.

In addition, agricultural water rates will be set at $192.89 per arable acre.

For a typical residential home, the increases will add $108.41 to the utility bills over the course of the year.

Svetlichny said Summerland’s capital reserves need to increase to meet future needs.

As of Dec. 31, 2020, the municipality will have an estimated $12 million in reserves, but the municipality’s estimated infrastructure replacement costs total more than $350 million.

The three utilities have a combined infrastructure deficit of around $85 million.

“This large deficit highlighted the need to the district that significant investment was still required in order to support the long term needs of the community,” Svetlichny said in a report to council.

To meet this need, Summerland’s council has committed to a five-year rate increase plan to address reserve funds.

The municipality of Summerland has had a presentation about the budget and proposed rate increases earlier. The presentation is on Summerland’s YouTube channel.

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Finance