Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Bessemer City Council approves water rate hikes

By PAMELA JANSSON

[email protected]

Bessemer — Members of the Bessemer City Council approved on Monday evening a resolution that allows for the adoption of increased water rates as of Sept. 1, with additional hikes to follow in coming years.

The resolution, which facilitates a 40-year bond repayment plan, reads as follows:

“Whereas the city of Bessemer, county of Gogebic, state of Michigan, had determined that it is necessary to acquire and construct improvements to the city’s water distribution system, consisting generally of the replacement of a water main and reservoir tank, together with the related improvements, structures, equipment and appurtenances and restorations, and ...

“Whereas, readiness-to-serve charges and commodity charges need to be increased to repay our loans through the state of Michigan, Drinking Water State Revolving Fund to begin in 2025,”

“Therefore, be it resolved that...the City Council hereby adopts the following rates and fees for municipal water services:

The increased 2024 rate, as of Sept. 1, is listed as a $42 readiness-to-serve charge for each month for commercial billings, in addition to $7.52 per 1,000 gallons of water drawn and an $84 readiness-to-serve charger every two months for residential billings, in addition to $7.52 per 1,000 gallons of water drawn.

Councilman Mark Movrich voted against the motion and told The Globe afterward that, although he believes the water system improvements are necessary, he also thinks that a 30-year financing plan would have been fairer to younger residents.

During the public comment session, William McDonald also submitted a petition with 17 signatures voicing opposition to the water system improvements.

In related news, council members also unanimously:

—Approved a resolution that tentatively awards a construction contract for Division A water system improvements (i.e., water main) to Jake’s Excavating and Landscaping, LLC of Ironwood. The low bid was for $1,028,446.98.

—Approved a resolution tentatively awarding a construction contract for Staab Construction, based in Marshfield, Wisconsin, for Division B water system improvements (i.e., a water reservoir tank of just under 700,000 gallons). The low bid was for $1,783,000.

 
 
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