Notice of Public Meeting:
Intention to Change Water & Sewer Rates & Connection Charges

In accordance with Township Notice By-law 2007-119, notice is hereby given that the Council of The Corporation of Loyalist Township intends to impose a rate decrease to water and sewer flat rates, a rate increase to water and sewer consumption based rates, and a modification to water and sewer connection fees based on the recent study completed by Hemson Consulting Ltd. on behalf of the Township. The increase to the bulk water hauler rates based on consumption will consistently reflect the discounted combined volumetric rate.

Connection charges Existing charge Proposed charge.

Water residential* $6,695 $7,545
Sewer residential* $6,215 $5,580
Total $12,910 $13,125

Water non-residential per daily m3 $15,535 $15,560
Sewer non-residential per daily m3 $14,421 $11,737
Total $29,956 $27,297

User rates Existing rate Proposed rate
Water flat fee per month $34.04 $28.50
Water consumption fee per m3 $1.71 $2.52
Sewer flat fee per month $30.22 $25.50
Sewer consumption fee per m3 $1.51 $2.05
Bulk water per m3 $3.38 $3.58
*Single-Detached Dwelling and Semi-Detached Dwelling

The changes to water and sewer consumption and flat rates are to be implemented for the billing periods ending January 15, 2020 and February 15, 2020, depending on the service area, and effective for the January 2020 month end billings for bulk water haulers. The changes to the connection fees will be implemented on January 1, 2020.

A public meeting to formally present these charges and rates by By-law 2019-099 and By-law 2019-100 will be held in the Council Chambers, located in the Odessa Administration Building, on November 12, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. It is the intent that these by-laws will be adopted on November 25, 2019 at the following regular Council meeting.

If you are a person with a disability and need Loyalist Township information in another format, please contact 613-386-7351 ext. 100 between 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. or e-mail info@loyalist.ca.

For further information regarding the proposed changes, please contact Brianne MacNevin, Senior Financial Analyst at (613) 386-7351 ext. 154.

Stephen Dickey
Director of Business Services/Treasurer

Editor note.
What this means to the consumer is a s follows.
If you use 25 cubic meters of water and sewer in a two month period your bill will increase by 6.3%
If you use 50 cubic meters of water and sewer in a two month period your bill will increase by 16.2%
Have a look at your last bill and see where you fall between 25 and 50 cubic meters.
This will give you an idea of the increase you are facing in the first year.

One of our residents attended the meeting on the 12th November 2019 and presented the following concerns. If you have similar concerns with the proposed increases please take the time to add your comments on the website.Just write them in the “Comment” section and I will make sure they reach the Township.

Presentation to Loyalist Council 12 November 2019

Ref proposed increase in water and sewer rates. 

 Loyalist Township currently has the 3rd highest rates of 14 municipalities as bench-marked in the Hemson survey. This indicates to me that there should be some room to find cost efficiencies to reduce current costs; let alone raise rates by a compound rate of more than 26% over the next four years (6.0%/year) especially in consideration of the increases in previous years.

2008 21% and then 8% for the next 4 years = 32%

2011 6% for next 5 years = 30%

2014 8% for next 5 years = 40%

The result is a compound increase of 346% since 2008! and you want 26% more?! Have wages and pensions increased at this rate? Are community members aware? I believe that most members would be quite upset with the continued increases.

Operations reductions

Part of the increase is for additional staff when consumption is anticipated to remain constant!

2020 $188,700

2021 $392,400

2022 $400,200

Total $981,300 (about 6% of revenue)

Not only should the current operations be thoroughly examined for cost efficiencies and reductions, these proposed increases in staff need to be fully justified. i.e. a thorough detailed operational review is needed.

Capital renewal 

I was advised that part of the rates include annual contributions to capital at a rate of 4% of current facility replacement value of $244 million. This implies that each component of the facilities will be replaced every 25 years. This annual 4% rate appears to be too high based on the fact that many components of the facilities such as sewers and water lines can last in excess of 75 years without any replacement. Since 90% of the infrastructure is considered to be in good (10%) or very good (80%) condition, a more reasonable allocation could be 2% of replacement value instead of the proposed 4%.

Furthermore capital needs and projects should be developed based on actual inspection of components rather than by a formulaic model. If consumption is to remain constant, why are there multimillion dollar line items in the capital budget to expand the Bath and Fairfield plants?!

Transparency 

There has been very little notice for this meeting (12 November 2019) and I suggest that very few people are aware of the proposed increases. (Not many people read the township website or social media). A more transparent notification would be to identify the total rate increases. A wider notification to the public is necessary.

Recommendations 

That approval of any and all sewer and water rate changes is deferred until:

  • A thorough organizational review to find efficiencies and cost reductions in current operations is completed,
  • The need for future staff increases is justified in view of the fact that there will be no overall change in consumption,
  • A more detailed assessment of capital needs is carried out and a rationalized detailed capital project list is developed.
  • A more complete notification to and consultation with wider numbers of the public be undertaken.

Dave Riddell

53 Genora Drive.  Bath

6 Comments, RSS

  • John Oleksiuk

    says on:
    November 19, 2019 at 8:44 pm

    The increase in water/sewer rates is not justified. The rates are out of line with other similar communities that have little or no commercial entities to assist in cost offset. These proposed increases are well above the inflation rate. I agree with your comments and your request for a complete review.

  • Brian Nilsson

    says on:
    November 20, 2019 at 7:20 am

    Agree with your comments … there was no mention from the study about efficiency possibilities … the Township needs to tighten their operating belt.

  • Gary Tackaberry

    says on:
    November 20, 2019 at 9:59 am

    It appears to me that water management does not want to look at efficiences to reduce price increase.
    Maybe management need to be reviewed.

  • Fred Brown

    says on:
    November 20, 2019 at 12:14 pm

    So what happens when more water is required to clean up after the Cement Plant Fall-Out? I used $27.36 in water and $24.16 in sewer…and my bill was over $180.00…really Loyalist Township, are you kidding me?!

  • Daniel ffolliott

    says on:
    November 20, 2019 at 12:28 pm

    My Water Bill dated Nov 15/2019 based on a 2-month consumption of 19 m3 came to $189.70. Under the proposed rate allocations that figure would rise to $194.83. That translates to a resultant 2.7% increase in my total bimonthly bill. At my level of consumption, the “metered’ charges will rise from 32.25% to 44.57% of the bimonthly bill. At the same time, the “flat rate” percentage will fall from 67.75% to 55.43% of my bimonthly bill.

    Putting aside the confusion of too many statistics, and in the absence of detailed information as to the Council’s rationale for setting component rates, it seems to me that the Council wants (a) to increase total revenue to cover rising costs and (b) is attempting to do this by jiggling the rates in a way that “hurts” some categories of users more than others.

    I don’t think this matter will ever be totally settled until a full discussion takes place with Council on how they set the water rates and what their priorities should be in being fair to all segments of users. At the same time, they should be looking for cost efficiencies and how the capital fixed costs of creating new capacity for housing expansion projects are recovered and from whom and over what time frame.

    Daniel ffolliott
    63 Glenora

  • Gary Jack

    says on:
    November 20, 2019 at 10:51 pm

    My consumption averages approx. 29 cubic meters. Only two people live in our house. We don’t water our lawn and therefore don’t abuse water usage. Many residents that have more then two people in their household have to consume much more then 27 cubic meters every two months. Councils report stated the average usage in Loyalist is 27 cubic meters every two months which is impossible. Council attempts to justify the insane increase (6.3% to 16.3%) The bottom line is there isn’t any justification that makes sense for such an outlandish increase being proposed. We all expect reasonable increases but this is just madness.
    The sad part is council has made up their minds and it doesn’t matter what the residents present as suggestions. Most people in Loyalist are not aware of this increase. Council didn’t have the nerve to advise the residents by indicating the insane increase in BOLD LETTERS on our bill over four months. The Mayor and councillers don’t deserve to represent Loyalist. Obviously they are not protecting our interest. As with most people I have lost total respect for all politicians because the only thing they are good at is not telling the truth.

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