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Phoenix fees for water, waste to rise

Casey Newton
The Arizona Republic
Dec. 25, 2007 12:00 AM

PHOENIX - The cost of living in Phoenix is going up in 2008, with the fee for solid-waste disposal rising and increases likely for water and wastewater and services.

This month, the City Council approved a 4.1 percent increase to the residential solid-waste fee. Residents will pay $25.45 a month under the new rates, which take effect in January.

The cost of replacing and rehabilitating the city's aging infrastructure, as well as evolving federal drinking-water standards, led city officials to request the water increases, they said.

"The Water Services Department continues to be faced with balancing the need for water capital projects and limited water revenues that are not able to meet all these needs," said Tammy Perkins, acting water services director, in a report to the council.

Officials have requested a combined water and wastewater increase of 9.9 percent, or $4.38 per month, for the average homeowner.

Under the new rates, the average homeowner would pay $48.79 for water service.

A public hearing on the water rates is Jan. 30.

If approved by the City Council, the rates will take effect March 3.

The increases would help fund projects designed to help Phoenix meet new federal water-quality standards that require new treatments, officials said.