In 2011, residents and commercial property owners can expect a 5 percent increase in sewer rental rates after seven years.
Montgomery Township supervisors unanimously approved Monday night a 5 percent increase in sewer rental charges for residential and commercial properties. The increase went into effect Jan. 1.
Non-metered users – property owners with a well – will now pay $121.50 a quarter instead of $116 a quarter.
Usage per 1,000 gallons of water will be $2.58, up from $2.46.
The connection fee per Equivalent Dwelling Unit, or EDU, will be $79.13, up from $75.84.
Township manager Larry Gregan said the increase was proposed as part of the adopted township sewer authority budget.
Montgomery Township Municipal Sewer Authority Chairman Sam Dugan said people play a flat rate and pay for the amount of gallons used in a quarter.
"A handful of people don't get public water, and they pay a flat fee of $121.50 a quarter," Dugan said. "They are still using our sewers. Since the bill is based on water usage, we have no idea what their water usage would be."
He said the amount for these people is based on "an average usage."
"We haven't raised rates in seven years. That's a long time," Dugan said. "It's our only source of revenue."
He said wages went up in the past year and it was a major influence on the increase. Tacked on to that is the fact that there has been no new sewer hook-ups, causing revenue to fall off.
The revenue pays for the operating expenses for the municipal sewer treatment plant. Dugan said the authority buys capacity for six treatment plants: Montgomery Township, Lower Gwynedd, Upper Gwynedd, Chalfont, Lansdale and a third of Hatfield.
"When we last raised rates, we did it with the idea we would hold for three years," Dugan said. "We went for seven years."