By Susan Tebben
Despite the city’s absorption of rising water rates, Canfield residents will have to pay a little more for their water next year.
Youngstown has raised water rates since 2009, but because of a balance in Canfield’s water fund, the city has been able to absorb the cost.
Youngstown has imposed 10-percent increases that will continue for the next three years, said city manager Joseph Warino.
“However, in 2011, the city of Canfield painted both the elevated water storage tank and the ground reservoir, and in 2012 replaced waterlines on Skyline and Callahan drives in the city,” Warino said.
Because of those projects and future plans, the water-fund capital budget would be depleted if Canfield again absorbed the water-rate hike, Warino stated.
The average Canfield city water customer, consuming about 5,000 gallons of water in a billing cycle, will now pay $36 more a year, or $9 more per quarter.
City Attorney Mark Fortunato said other cities in Ohio were compared before the price increase was agreed upon. Council members and Mayor William Kay said it wasn’t an unexpected occurrence.
“Water rates are going up all over the country,” Kay said. “It is what it is.”
When the rate increase went up for a vote, Kay said he wished there was another alternative to pursue. Council Member Andy Skrobola gave one possible solution.
“I would suggest that we entertain and examine the possibilities and consider purchasing our water from Aqua Ohio,” Skrobola said.
A connection is close to town, Skrobola said, and it is a possibility that has been discussed in the past.
Until another option is available, though, the city residents will have to take on the costs.