MSD Board Gives Preliminary Approval to Rate Hike

by Stephanie Crosby

Sewer rates will likely go up in August for customers of the Metropolitan Sewer District in Louisville. The proposed increase of 6.5% was given preliminary approval this morning by the agency’s board of directors.

MSD Director Bud Schardein says one of the driving forces behind the annual increase is an $850-million project mandated by the EPA to update the sewer system’s wastewater treatment processes. Schardein says MSD has to meet the federal requirements of that consent order by 2024.

“I’m doing everything I possibly can to be as conservative with the public dollar,” says Schardein, “but at the same time, every day in this job, I recognize what our regulatory requirements are, I understand what our responsibilities are, and I understand what our customers’ expectations are.”

Schardein says the money will also be used to improve storm water drainage and to update the city’s aging flood protection system.

The increase would mean an additional $2.40 on the average customer’s bi-monthly bill. Another board vote is expected in July.