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Residents: Water and Sewer Bills To Jump By 20 Percent

With Town Meeting members approving $18 million for water and $21 million for sewer, the average homeowner could see their water/sewer bill increase by $250.

Town Meeting members approved an $18 million water budget and a $21 million sewer budget this week.

Those Town Meeting votes will translate to a 20 percent increase in water and sewer bills said Framingham Chief Financial Officer Mary Ellen Kelley.

Kelley said based on the approval of the water and sewer enterprise Town Meeting articles, the average homeowner could see their water and sewer bill increase by $250.

Some Town Meeting member said the "huge" increase may shock and "surprise" some homeowners.

The CFO called the increase "substantial."

New rates typically go into effect n July 1.

Homeowners saw between 2-3 percent increase this year (FY13). In FY12, the water rate increased by 5 percent but the sewer rate increase 15-17 percent.

On Wednesday night, Town meeting member Jake Bajakian of Precinct 11 said "we hear the same rhetoric every year on why the rates go up and I still don't understand why the rates go up. ... I have yet to hear about a return on the money we spent. I don't think the rates will ever go down in my lifetime."

The CFO told Town Meeting members that the rate increase is a combination of construction costs for water & sewer and a decline in usage.

Nancy May 17, 2013 at 06:55 PM
Been trying to sell my house for 2 years, its impossible unless you "give it away", this is only going to make matters worse! I have wanted out of here for quite some time and feel like Im chained to Framingham!
Bob Berman May 17, 2013 at 08:41 PM
Mary Ann, what it means is that one of the town's largest consumers of water was the Sealtest plant, which closed. The CFO indicated that they expected much of that amount to be made up for by the new Genzyme buildings, but they have not done that so far. So there are far fewer gallons of water being used (and billed) than there was the year prior.
JRR May 17, 2013 at 10:07 PM
My recollection could be wrong so if someone knows chime in...didn't the rate rise a few years ago by 25%?
Mary Ann Quintal May 18, 2013 at 12:42 PM
5% water and 17% sewer on july 1, 2011.
Walking Man May 18, 2013 at 11:02 PM
Water tax shortfall due to Sealtest plant closure, why not raise real estate taxes and leave water rates alone? Either way the town needs to make up for the shortfall.

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