Weyburn residents will notice an increase on their utility bills effective January 1, 2014.
Following a report from the city's Finance Department, Weyburn City Council reviewed a slide presentation recommending a three per cent increase to all City utility base rates, excluding the landfill decommissioning fee and the environmental fee.
The change will take place effective January 1, 2014. However, administration cautions that there may be additional increases in the future once a five year capital and operating budget has been prepared.
"Cities all over Saskatchewan are facing the challenge of infrastructure renewal and Weyburn is no exception. In particular, our city has implemented new, water treatment processes to deal with the water quality issues that we have experienced in the past. That investment makes life better for all of us in this city, but it comes at a cost. Our Finance Department has advised that it would be prudent to increase revenues to deal with these costs and I support that advice," said City Manager Bob Smith.
He added that the increase would amount to an increase of about one dollar per month per household. Weyburn's rates continue to compare favourably to similar-sized cities in Saskatchewan.
"No one likes to see rates to go up. I certainly don't, and I know that ratepayers are getting hit from many sides lately. I want to assure residents that we remain committed to running a frugal, streamlined municipal government. But a frugal approach includes the philosophy that it's better to spend a little money on maintenance today than to have to spend more money down the road on infrastructure. I'm confident that users of the utility will understand the importance of this small increase," Smith said.
The Bylaw to implement the increase will be heard by City Council on Monday, November 12, 2013.
*City Council gave initial approval to rezone 40 18th Street, Regens Disposal, from a medium industrial zone to a heavy industrial zone to accommodate a salvage yard and recycling centre and transfer facility.
Council would like to hear from neighbouring property owners prior to a third and final reading.
The salvage yard, recycling centre and transfer facility would allow for recyclable material to be dropped off, sorted, baled and reloaded into trailers and shipped to other destinations for recycling.
"The transfer facility would be short storage. No more than 24 hours and the majority would be recyclable material," Regens owner Gene Baniulis told council, adding that the facility would be dealing with approximately 50 tonnes of material or less.