PORTERVILLE, Calif. (KFSN) --Tuesday night the Porterville City Council is expected to discuss plans to move forward with an increase in water rates. City Manager John Lollis said the move is necessary to make improvements to an aging water system.
"We presented to the city council to what historical has been our extraction, and where the targets are being set out to begin in a couple of years and things that we need to begin doing from a capital investment."
Also pushing the rate hike-- requirements from the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. Lollis said that would greatly reduce the pumping of groundwater.
Residents have been cutting back on water use but that's still now enough.
"Even with the conversation measures that the city did, and our citizens did extraordinary. We saw a 30-percent reduction in water consumption use in 2015," said Lollis.
The proposed rate hike would begin on July first. City officials said the average water bill of $29.80 per month would increase to $55. An additional two-percent increase through the year 2021 would help pay for the project that's expected to cost a million dollars per year to maintain.
Residents throughout Porterville have concerns about the proposed rate hike on hitting their pocket books.
One resident, Angie Valenzuela, said, "The middle class, or the working class, has to pay for those, but what about those who are on SSI or Welfare. It's not fair to them."
The city is sending out notifications with this month's water bill to inform the public, along with a ballot, asking residents if they agree or disagree with the increase.
The city will hold a public hearing on June 21st before a final vote.