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New water, sewer rates coming for New Hanover County

WILMINGTON -- New water and sewer rates are in the works for New Hanover County residents. The newly consolidated Cape Fear utility authority held a meeting last night to hear public opinion. Come July 1, Wilmington and New Hanover County residents will be billed jointly for their water. Residents met with Cape Fear authority leaders to discuss their concerns about the new program. Wilmington resident Bob Wallen said, "I have the fear of the unknown, as far as the new authority, who will take this on, how much it will cost and what the ramifications are." Wallen hoped to have his questions answered. He said that didn't happen. "No they're were no facts given, all they said is that they were fact finding and patronizing us to see what we had to say and hopefully they'll react on some of our comments." Many residents fear water and sewer services will cost more than they currently pay. Cape Fear Public Utility Authority member Bobby Grier says that's not true. Grier said, "It would be less expensive under the authority than it would be individually under the city and the county." The lowest unit rate proposed by the Cape Fear authority is $1.95 per 1,000 gallons for those customers using 9,000 gallons or less. Currently customers at that usage level pay $2.38 in Wilmington and $1.96 in unincorporated New Hanover County. Under the authority plan, the more water you use after 9,000 gallons, the higher the rate. The Cape Fear Utility Authority will hold another public meeting April 9 at 9 a.m. at the New Hanover County Government Center.

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Water Quality

I wonder if the quality of water will improve when they take over. I have county water and I won't even use ice from my refrigerator. I read the reports that they send us and all the levels are just barely acceptable standards.