Baltimore imposed another round of planned water rate increases Sunday, the third consecutive rate hike in as many years. Water rates jumped about 9 percent in a move by city officials to fix the city’s century-old infrastructure and error-prone water billing system.
The increase will mean a typical home paying $84 a month will now pay $92. For every 748 gallons, or 10 cubic feet of water, a household uses, the cost is $2.73. Bay and stormwater fees will not increase.
Under the rate hikes, the price of water in the city has doubled in the past eight years, sparking outrage from residents and activists who protested the increase in front of Baltimore City Hall on Monday morning. Nearly one-fourth of constituent service requests in District 1 are related to water bills, said City Councilman Zeke Cohen, who joined Councilwoman Shannon Sneed at Monday’s demonstration.
Advocates have called upon city officials to cap water rates based on household income. According to standards set forth by the United Nations, water costs should not exceed 3 percent of a family’s income. “If you cap water bills […]