Mt. Airy Council raises water and garbage rates; approves improvements to Wood Springs Drive

Mt. Airy City Hall (file photo)

Mt. Airy residents will pay more for water and garbage services next year. The town council on Monday voted to raise the base water rate by $3 per month and increase garbage fees by $3 per can.

Before the vote, Mt. Airy Town Clerk Sheri Berrong pointed out the town has not raised water rates since 2018. Mayor Ray McAllister stated that the council and staff looked at water rates last year, and it was costing more to make water than what the town was selling it for to its customers.

The town’s garbage collection costs have also risen, according to the council. Mt. Airy’s current provider, Waste Management, informed the town it was going up on its rates. Previously, they were charging the town $11.50 per can. The town bid out the service and the low bidder was FCS Sanitation of Toccoa, GA. The bid was $14.00 per can. One unnamed bidder quoted $21 a can. Berrong reminded the council that the town also incurs costs due to staff maintaining the trash cans.

Following the discussion, council member Patrick Ledford made a motion to increase the rates for both water and garbage. Councilmember Ken Moore seconded the motion, and it passed 4-0.

The move will raise Mt. Airy’s base water rate to $20 per month for customers living inside city limits and $33 a month for those living outside city limits. The base garbage rate will increase from $15 per month to $18 per customer.

The increases go into effect on January 1. A notice will be provided with customers’ December bills.

The Mt. Airy Council also voted unanimously to proceed with road repairs on Wood Springs Drive. According to Mayor McAllister, the road is cracked pretty badly and has grass growing through it. They have been building houses on that road and only have a couple of lots left to build. The town delayed paving the road until the developers were done building.

Berrong gave the council a rough estimate of $20,000 to complete the roadwork. She reminded the council that the contractor has not inspected the road and it could cost more depending on the condition of the road base.

The council voted to move forward with the project using Local Maintenance and Improvement Grant (LMIG) funds from the Georgia Department of Transportation. Moore made the motion, and councilmember Adam Tullis seconded it. The vote was 4-0. Councilmember Chris Greene was absent.

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