Residents of Lemoyne will soon see a spike in sewer rates. Borough council approved an increase in the rates Thursday night.
Council members were in agreement that rates would have to go up to pay for sewer upgrades called for by the Chesapeake Bay Initiative and the resulting debt service, but they disagreed on the amount.
The borough had been debating two options. The first would double sewer rates to $80 a month. The second would raise rates to $45 a month for the first 2,100 gallons, then $.02 a gallon after that.
Debate Thursday night centered on a $65 base for residents, which some council members thought was too high.
"I just think that we're trying to find a balance between folks that don't use a lot and folks that are higher users and I just don't think personally that it's the right number for this borough," council president Stacy Gromlich said.
Council vice president Lynda Stark agreed.
"I think to jump to $65, an extra $20, which is really $25 more a month than our current rate, I think is unfair," she said.
In the end, the council voted 4-3 to approve a base rate of $65 for residential customers and $80 a month for commercial customers up to 2,100 and gallons, and $.008 after that.
Among those approving the hike was Roi Baptiste.
"My biggest fear is that we go in $55 and next year we have a problem and we go again with another rate hike," he explained. "We just do it now and bit the bullet and I know it sounds terrible but we need to have that build in security there."