The City Council has been updating the City’s Master and Maintenance Plans for our utility systems. These updates ensure that the City’s systems are maintained and upgraded appropriately so that services continue to run smoothly for residents.
The plan updates showed that the pressurized irrigation, sewer, and storm drain funds all have the appropriate amount of funding to keep up on the proper maintenance and capital projects. As such, no increases are being considered for any of those funds.
However, while updating these plans, the City found that there is a need for a new culinary water well. As growth has occurred in Highland and surrounding areas, ground water has gone deeper and one of our wells that was first dug in 1986 is no longer is able to reach current ground water levels. Digging this well deeper will allow the City to bring this well back online and again use it to provide drinking water to the City.
If the City moved forward with this well project in addition to the standard system maintenance, the Culinary Water Fund would run out of funds by 2023 without a revenue increase. As a result, the City Council is considering raising culinary water rates. This increase would mean most Highland residents would see a monthly increase of $3.67 on their utility bill. This increase will allow the City to continue with needed maintenance and capital projects in our culinary system so that we can continue to deliver clean drinking water to residents.
The City Council will continue discussing this proposal at the May 18 City Council meeting. If adopted, the new culinary rate would take effect on the July utility bill.
For more information on the study and this change, please visit the 2021 Utility Rate Study page.