RIDGEWAY — Town Council approved the second and final reading of the FY 2-14-2015 budget without dissent during Thursday’s regular scheduled meeting.
The process went off without a hitch.
Prior to the vote, council entertained a public hearing in which not a single citizen spoke during the public comment portion.
The millage rate will stand pat as it has since 2008.
Budget Control Board requires municipalities to charge a millage rate in order to receive a Local Option Sales Tax.
Council also unanimously approved the first reading of amendments to sections four and six of Ordinance 3-1001, to modify the cost of service to all classes of customers of water and sewer in Ridgeway.
An increased cost of $.78 will take affect across the board after Thursday’ s reading.
It was previously discussed in meetings in April and May that Ridgeway residents would be seeing an increase in their water and sewer bill during the new fiscal year.
Council unanimously approved all rates to be rounded up to the next dollar to accommodate for water service employees’ salaries and system upgrades.
Traditionally the town has just passed on the rate increase from Winnsboro, but the Town of Ridgeway was not making enough revenue to upgrade its system.
“Each year we’ve increased water rates because water is bought wholesale from Winnsboro and in order to make some profit by providing the service we will have to go up on our rates as well,” Ridgeway Mayor Charlene Herring said during May’s meeting.
Winnsboro’s wholesale rate will be going up to $.78 per 1,000 gallons.
Council noted that a traditional household will use 3,000 gallons in a billing cycle.
Ridgeway’s base rate last year was $13.94 for the usage of 1,000 gallons, but with a $.78 increase the rate would be $14.72 and council will round the base rate to an even $15 after a unanimous vote by council.
“I would like to see that go up because we’ve just been keeping up with the rate increase of Winnsboro and water is Ridgeway’s only major source of revenue,” Councilman Doug Porter said.
Porter noted that the town just spent nearly $10,000 in April to paint and re-wax a water tank, which is a process that is needed every seven to eight years.