At last night’s utility committee meeting in Steubenville, council heard from the finance department the data they requested last week about moving forward with water rate increases.

The worst-case scenario presented to council does not include expected grants or loans, so these numbers may come down. But the rates are based on a total of $29 million in infrastructure upgrades, including line replacements and improvements at the water and sewer treatment plants, and paying for eight new utility workers.

Get ready to open up your wallet, the first proposed rate increase would be a 34 percent increase to the water, sewer and refuse bill, meaning a roughly $24 increase would push the current monthly bill of $68.82 to $92.52.

There would be incremental increases between 2020 and 2022 for an increase of %70.

Council and administrators are bracing for the blowback from residents. There will be three town hall meetings scheduled for the week of July 30th.