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Proposed bill could help make water more affordable for city residents

Posted at 10:04 AM, Dec 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-03 10:04:08-05

Baltimore City Council President Jack Young is expected to introduce a bill on Monday aimed at helping people pay their water bills.

It's called the Water Accountability and Equity Act and would help create an income-based water affordability program for low-income families. The ordinance will also create an Office of the Water Customer Advocate to assure a fair process for all customers to resolve billing problems. 

There's a push to get the bill passed because of an upcoming water rate hike that's scheduled to take place. Under the plan, water rates could rise by nine percent each year for three years, starting in July.

RELATED: Water rates could rise in Baltimore if proposal passes

This would add $8 a month to a bill for a family of three, so that would mean by the year 2022, that family of three would be paying roughly $300 more a year.

A study done by independent consultant Roger Colton found that more than half of the households in Baltimore will not be able to afford their water bills without the passage of a bill similar to the one Young is proposing. 

Council President Young will discuss his proposed bill 4 p.m. at City Hall on Monday.