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As part of a multi-year, utility infrastructure reinvestment plan approved by the City Council, the City of Broken Arrow will implement a fourth rate increase for water, sewer and stormwater services. A similar rate increase was approved last year.
Beginning with bills received in November 2019, a typical residential customer in the City limits that uses 7,000 gallons of water per month will see the water fee increase about $2.38, the sewer fee increase about $2.37 and the stormwater fee increase by $0.62. These changes will make the bill for a typical household using 7,000 gallons increase about $5.37 per month.
The rate increases are necessary to continue providing utility services in Broken Arrow and pay both operational costs and debt service payments on $90 million worth of capital projects for the utility infrastructure.
“Aging utility systems that experience significant growth always face challenges. With the addition of new environmental regulations and emerging technologies, these challenges can be expensive," said Assistant City Manager of Operations Kenneth Schwab. "A perfect example is our County Line Trunk Sewer system. The sewer line is almost 40 years old and has experienced significant degradation and deterioration over the years. We have made numerous point repairs and patches over the past few years during heavy rains, which have resulted in several bypasses that adversely impacted surrounding creeks. These rate increases will continue to pay for projects like the complete replacement of nearly five miles of the County Line Trunk Sewer, which will be constructed in two phases. The first phase is about $16 million and is currently under construction now.
“Broken Arrow has more than tripled the number of its residents since 1980! So as a utility provider, we’re playing catch up with the aging portions of our infrastructure. It’s important that we modernize and make the system more efficient to provide high quality services to our residents and businesses, and position ourselves for continued growth.”
Some of the projects completed, or nearing completion, since 2016 include:
In 2016, the City hired the engineering consultant firm of Black and Veatch, which specializes in helping municipalities analyze costs for services delivered and establish appropriate utility rates. Black and Veatch, working with staff, determined what Broken Arrow’s water, sewer and stormwater fees should be in order to pay for the necessary utility systems improvements, operational expenses and additional staffing needs to maintain the systems.
View the complete Capital Improvement Plan at www.BrokenArrowOK.gov/UtilityCIP.