STURGIS, Ky. (WEHT)- For months, the Sturgis City Council has been working to get its finances back on track, as they recover from a financial crisis. Now, it seems there are new problems after some recent changes in water rates.
Some residents argue that the city can’t be run like a business. Mayor Billy Adams responds, “How else do you run it?”
Criticism towards the Sturgis City Council following the shock of some residents’ water bills. Cecil Golightly-Tasker shares, “My bill, a little over, doubled. These people on these fixed incomes aren’t going to be able to handle it. They aren’t gonna”. Another resident says, “Our stuff is about to get shut off, we can’t afford it”.
Mayor Adams explains the current rates, that haven’t been changed since 2014. He says, “We lowered the minimum usage to 2,000 gallons. And then when we took into account the water loss, we came to the figure of $35.56 for the first 2,000 gallons. Then every thousand gallon after that is $17.76 or something like that… and then obviously the sewage went to 100%. It was 56 or 57, I think”.
Residents are also raising concerns about incorrect meter readings. Golightly-Tasker says, “I got my bill and I paid it, then I turned around and got another bill. So, they’re not reading them correctly”.
The mayor responds, “We’re going to have to do something different. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. This insanity cannot continue. We’re going to have to make a proposal to get these meters read on time”.
Mayor Adams says they plan to revisit this issue in 6 months.
“It just had to happen… I know that’s not an acceptable answer to some people, but it had to happen. But this is not a finished product, by any stretch of the imagination”.
Residents express their worry that this price hike will force people to leave Sturgis. One resident says, “People are going to leave and there’s going to be nothing left here”.
Mayor Adams assures the public, “we’re not just going to leave you in the cold, we’re not just going to shut your water off. Come and talk to us, we’ll sit down and work out something”.
The next city council meeting is Monday, November 6th.