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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY)– With millions of dollars in bond debt the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority will be forced to increase bills in the future. Wilmington residents have had issues with the utility company’s billing for quite some time. Wednesday night the CFPUA had its annual meeting and invited the public to voice its complaints.

Only two customers showed up for the public comment period of the meeting.

“Our customer service department does a good job,” said Jim Quinn, the CFPUA Chairman. “If you’ve got a complaint they address it and they don’t stop until you understand what your situation is.”

Officials from the utility company say the organization has overcome some real challenges in its first few years of existence.

In 2011, the CFPUA has tackled projects like the Sweeney Water Treatment Plant and the Third Street Streetscape, where they are currently replacing water and sewer line.

As far as operations go, the CFPUA came in 15% under budget.

“The reason rates stay like they are and probably have to go up is another part of the budget is the capital improvements budget and these things we have to do in order to comply with federal regulations and to keep from having spills,” said Quinn.

The CFPUA is dealing with an infrastructure that is mandated by the city and the county. Despite the nearly $52,000,000 bond sale to update the water and sewer systems in the area, officials say they are trying their best to keep rates down.

“We’ve had to cut back on some of our capital improvements and try to keep our debt service down and keep our rates down and we’ve done a lot of shuffling around and done whatever we’ve had to do to keep them as low as possible,” said Quinn.

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