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Porterdale water, sewer rates to rise
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Water and sewer rates are going up in Porterdale beginning July 1 to compensate for an increase in rates charged to the city by Newton County.

The Porterdale City Council in a called meeting on Thursday night discussed an increase in the rate it charges for water and sewer, which is expected to increase about $3.48 cents a month for the average household customer who uses 6,000 gallons a month.

That's five cents more than is necessary to cover the cost imposed by Newton County for its wholesale customers such as Porterdale. The increase will be effective July 1 and is needed to cover costs to the city by Newton County raising its rates to wholesale customers.

"The city rate is five cents higher than the pass-on rate from the county. The five-cent addition is needed to offset the cost of lost and uncounted for water," City Manager Bob Thomson said.

Councilwoman Linda Finger stood strongly against the proposed increase.

"I think the County Commissioners should take into consideration the economic situation for everyone," she said.

Also Thursday, Mayor Bobby Hamby told council members that the city will receive a $250,000 grant from the Georgia Department of Transportation to finish train depot renovations and to use toward its trail system.

Council members also discussed enhancing its building code enforcement measures.  Among the proposed additions are fines up to $1,000 for overgrown weeds and other debris, foul odors, or disturbances.

"I think it would be useful to add more teeth to the ordinance," City Clerk Judy T. Johnson said.