Lansing to vote on water cost increase

2012-08-16T20:15:00Z Lansing to vote on water cost increaseBy Gregory Tejeda Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
August 16, 2012 8:15 pm  • 

LANSING | Village officials next week are expected to accept a nearly 58 percent increase in the cost of Lake Michigan water Lansing buys from Hammond.

Village Trustee Terry Kapteyn said the measure to be voted on by the board Tuesday calls for an increase of 41½ cents per 1,000 gallons of water in the rate that Lansing pays to Hammond.

Previously, Lansing was paying 72 cents per 1,000 gallons. But Hammond — as it did with all area communities to which it provides Lake Michigan water — imposed flat rate increases and did not allow any negotiation, Lansing officials said.

Lansing will pay $1.135 per 1,000 gallons, once the new rate agreement is approved.

“We buy our water from Hammond, and they set the price,” Trustee Mikal Stole said.

Kapteyn said the financial hit to Lansing will be lessened somewhat because the village sells some of the water it buys to South Holland and Lynwood.

Lansing is passing along part of the cost increase to those communities, and Kapteyn said officials in those villages approved the Lansing increase without objection.

“We passed it along, and they didn’t oppose it,” he said.

It is undetermined at this point how the rate hike will affect Lansing residents.

In anticipation of the rate increase, the Village Board previously approved a budget for this fiscal year that called for a significant increase in the amount of money in its water and sewer fund.

Village President Norm Abbott said he believes that is because buying Lake Michigan water from Hammond is still significantly cheaper than buying it from Chicago.

“We don’t want to have to get our water from Chicago, because they have passed along tremendous increases to communities,” Abbott said.

Referring to the the increase the village does face, he said, “Hammond has been fair to us.”

The Village Board on Tuesday also is expected to award a contract to D Construction for $164,662.40 for street resurfacing in the area of Arcadia and Oakley avenues, along with 183rd Street and 183rd Place.

Also to be considered is a proposed three-year deal at $110,000 per year with Omega Media, the company that for the past decade has operated Lansing Neighborhood Network, a cable access channel that features programming about the village on Channel 4 in Lansing.

Trustees also are likely to award a contract for $83,732.95 to Holland Asphalt Services Inc., which would develop a parking lot in the downtown business strip.

The lot would be on Lake Street near the Pelcher’s Shooters Supply Inc., 18149 Henry St.

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