by Gabe Bullard
The New Albany City Council is preparing to hold a final vote on a plan to increase sewer rates. The rate increase would be used to finance federally mandated infrastructure improvements to the sewer system.
The plan before the council would increase rates about 50 percent over the next few years. The extra revenue would be combined with a $7.4 million loan and used to upgrade the sewer system.
The plan passed the council 5-4 Monday. Councilman Pat McLaughlin voted against it. He says the city should avoid taking out a loan and instead make sewer improvements gradually, as money becomes available.
“They should be fixed and they will be fixed, but there’s not really a mandate that’s been set of ‘You will do this in this period of time,'” he says.
A final vote on the plan will be held next Thursday.