City council discusses utility rates in work session

The Bemidji City Council discussed potential utility rate increases during their work session Monday.

During the meeting, City Finance Director Ron Eischens noted that since the city received over $10 million in bonding from the state, the utility rate increases are much more palatable than they otherwise could have been, especially with the new water treatment plant constructed. 

PFM Consultant Matthew Stoffell presented the utility rate study, and said that the increases for the typical residential customer would be nominal. 

The council adopted the study and will likely adopt the rate increases during the regular meeting on Dec. 7.

The council also discussed a prohibition on privately drilled irrigation wells.

There are only one or two requests per year to privately drill into the aquifer, but the council approved the prohibition 5-1.

More information on the utility rate study is available in the city packet.

Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University. You can follow along with Larissa's live tweets of meetings and events on Twitter!

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