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Average sewer bills would increase nearly 6% under proposed budget

Noman M. Cole Jr. Pollution Control Plant in Lorton (via Fairfax County)

Sewer service bills are slated to increase by $38 on average, even with Fairfax County lowering a series of annual increases.

Fairfax County unveiled a proposed budget in February, which would increase a variety of sewer costs. The county noted the increases are lower than what it approved last year in a five-year service schedule.

The proposed changes call for the following:

  • The sewer service charge per 1,000 gallons of water, currently $7.72, would become $8.09 — a 4.8% increase — for the upcoming fiscal year, which runs from July to June. The rate would increase each subsequent year, becoming $8.41, $8.73, $9.21 and $9.67.
  • The quarterly sewer base charge, currently $36.54, would become $40.14 — a 9.9% increase. The rate each subsequent year would then be $44.43, $49.09, $51.79 and finally $54.38. Rates would vary based on connection line sizes.
  • One-time hookup charges are proposed to increase from $8,507 to $8,592, a 1% increase, for a single-family residence starting in July and 1% annual increases for the following four fiscal years.

The county commented on the potential increases in a proposed budget:

The annual average customer bill will increase from $640.24 in FY 2022 to $678.32 in FY 2023, an annual cost increase of $38.08 or 5.95 percent. The FY 2023 average bill in Fairfax County is one of the lowest compared to the average bill in other regional jurisdictions even with the proposed increases. The increases in the Sewer Service Charge and Base Charge from FY 2024 to FY 2027 will partially offset the increased costs associated with capital project construction, system operation and maintenance, debt service and upgrades to meet new, more stringent nitrogen discharge limitations from wastewater treatment plants.

County supervisors are slated to adopt the budget in May, following public hearings. The county plans to hold a hearing regarding the proposed sewer rate changes for 3 p.m. April 12, provided the county agrees on the timeline tomorrow (Tuesday).

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