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Sewer rate increase in Muskegon Township | News

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Sewer rate increase in Muskegon Township
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MUSKEGON TWP., Mich. (WZZM)- The sewer rate increase Muskegon Township board members approved in 2010 started appearing on residents' bills this week.

The $33 quarterly sewer bill sewer customers were accustomed to seeing is now $56. The rate is set to increase again in 2012, and 2013.

Township resident Christine Merryman says she's angry over the fee increase. Merryman says it will be a big hit on her already tight family budget. She says she'll pay the bill kicking and screaming.

Township Supervisor Dave Kieft says for 17-years the sewer rate in the township has remained the same. But some years the township used reserve funds to keep the rate from increasing. Kieft says this year $750,000 of savings will be used. Even with that money the rate had to go up.

Muskegon County is charging townships and municipalities connected to the county wastewater system higher rates. The problem, in part is due to the systems' biggest customer closing down. Sappi Fine Paper in Muskegon no longer pays millions of dollars each year to Muskegon County to move and treat wastewater.

The lack of major users like Sappi means townships, and in the end residents, will pay more to use the system.

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