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Lewisport city projects revenue surplus


The Lewisport City Council held the first reading of ordinance 21-3, the proposed budget for fiscal year 2021-2022, during its regularly scheduled city council meeting May 20. The city projects revenues of $2,833,350 versus expenses of $2,552,969 for the upcoming fiscal year, which leaves a projected surplus of $280,381.

Only the Heritage Festival line item shows expenses exceeding revenue, but since the city cancelled last year’s festival that money carried over to this year and the city allocated another $30,500, giving the city over $60,000 to spend on this year’s event. The city budgeted $50,900 for this year’s September festivities. The remaining fund categories either broke even, or showed a surplus.

The General Fund showed projected revenues of $502,350 with expenses of $493,743. The Road Fund’s projected revenue totaled $32,000, with expenses of $31,500, and the LGEA Fund showed revenues of $2,500 and expenses of $2,000.

The Gas System, long the main revenue source for the city, showed expected revenues of $1,262,000 and expenses of $1,143,326. The budget projected the Water Fund to bring in $582,100 with expenses of $475,200.

The Sewer Fund projected revenues total $379,900 and expenses of $319,200. The Fire Department Fund showed $31,500 with expenses of $29,100. The Park Fund broke even with projected revenues of $5,000 and expenses of the same amount. The Municipal Fund showed revenues of $6,000 and expenses of $3,000.

The next reading and approval of the budget takes place on June 17, 2021. The budget runs from July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022.

Lewisport alters water and sewer rate schedules
The city council also held the first reading of ordinances 21-4 and 21-5, dealing with the water and sewer rate schedule. The city did not raise the water rates, but added a meter charge to each bill and eliminated the minimum bill charge in each system.

The old water rate schedule charged city residents $9.81 cents for the first 1,000 gallons of water used, and $4.53 cents per each additional 1,000 gallons used thereafter. If a customer used 900 gallons of water per month, the customer paid only $9.81.

The new schedule charges every city customer a meter charge of $9.81, and $4.53 per each 1,000 gallons of water used. So, if a customer used 900 gallons of water in one month, the customer pays the $9.81 meter charge, plus $4.53 for a total of $14.34 cents.

Rural water customers pay a meter fee of $18.14 and a rate of $6.05 per each 1,000 gallons of water. So, a customer that uses 900 gallons of water per month paid $18.14 under the old rate schedule, and pays $24.19 now.

The city’s sewer system services only residents inside the city limits, so the rate change affects just city residents. Under the old rate schedule, residents paid a minimum bill of $12.48 and a rate of $4.85 per additional 1,000 gallons of sewage usage. So, a customer using only 900 gallons of paid $12.48. Now the customer pays a $12.48 meter charge plus $4.85 per each 1,000 gallons of sewage usage, or a total of $17.33 minimum.

The next reading and approval of these rate schedule changes takes place on June 17, 2021. The new rate schedule takes effect on July 1, 2021.

In other news
• The council approved a resolution to receive $24,000 in road aid.
• The municipal workers finished a project concerning a drainage issue on Holland Avenue.
• The city council approved hiring three summer workers this year.
• Mayor Gregory announced the city purchased a new Kubota. Magistrate Wayne Hodskins donated discretionary funds granted to him from Hancock County Fiscal Court towards the purchase.

By Ralph Dickerson

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