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New water customers will face deposit
City also raises sewer tap fees
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Forsyth County News

Other action

Also at the meeting, Cumming's mayor and city council approved the following:

• A fee structure for the Cumming Aquatic Center, which is set to open in early June.
Little said the daily admission fees will be: Free for children age 2 and younger; $4 for children ages 2 to 17; $5 for adults ages 18 to 59; and $4 for seniors 60 and older.

• A request to advertise for bids for a project that will involve relocating water lines, fire hydrants and valves at various locations along Kelly Mill Road.
Jon Heard, director of the city's utilities department, said the project is necessary to accommodate improvements Forsyth County plans to make on the road in preparation for a new elementary school.

• The city's insurance provider as QBE. Gail Petree of Saville and Associates Inc., an insurance brokerage, said QBE offered the lowest rate of just more than $140,700. The rate represents about a 12 percent increase from last year's cost.

• Proclamations declaring April as Confederate History and Heritage Month in the city and recognizing members of the Sons and Daughters of the Confederacy.

• A bid of $6,400 from The Graphic Edge in Forsyth County to print the 2011 Spring and Summer Recreation and Parks Guide.
Greg Little, department director, said 21,000 copies of the 24-page brochure will be printed.

• Also: Council heard an overview of the 2011 Cumming Playhouse season from Linda Heard, director.

-- Crystal Ledford

New Cumming water and sewer customers will see some fee increases beginning July 1.

During their monthly meeting Tuesday, the mayor and council approved a measure that will require all new water customers to pay a $125 deposit beginning July 1.

Currently, those who own a home do not have a pay a water deposit, while residential renters pay a $50 deposit and commercial renters pay $100.

Utilities director Jon Heard said the increase is necessary to help offset a drop in revenue that has resulted from bad debts.

"You have someone with a $60, $80, $100 water bill and no deposit up front, that ends up costing in the long run," Heard said. "These up-front deposits will be used to offset some of that bad debt."

The new deposit will impact only future municipal water customers, Heard said.

"Current customers won't be affected," he said.

The mayor and council also approved an increase to one of the city's sewer tap fees.

Currently, the fee is $500 for any home inside the city limits built prior to July 1, 1987.

The new fee will be $5,000 for such a home.

For all other properties the fee is currently at least $5,000. Homes in a special district located on Samples and Sanders roads pay $6,250 for sewer hook-up. 

"This just brings those homes built prior to 1987 in line with the fees for other properties," Heard said.

He said the move is needed because the city is seeing more older subdivisions with failing septic tanks wanting to hook on to city sewer.

"If you think about running a line probably out at least a mile and then making sure everything is hooked on properly, $500 really isn't enough money to cover that," Heard said.

As with the water deposit, the new sewer fee will not be retroactive for any current customer.

Heard proposed beginning the fee changes on June 1, however, Councilman Rupert Sexton proposed waiting until July 1.

Sexton's suggestion was approved.