At its recent monthly meeting, the Powdersville Water Board of Directors approved the Powdersville Water budget for 2016. The new budget includes a modest 3.0 percent rate increase for retail customers that will become effective with the January, 2016 billing. The recommendation for the increase was the result of Powdersville Water’s annual financial plan and rate modeling update. Each year Powdersville Water completes an annual update of its comprehensive Financial Plan and rate model to ensure that rates are adequate to cover projected expenditures for the coming year. This process takes into account not only the ongoing expenses of operating the system on a day-to-day basis but also debt service costs and any planned capital improvements. The rate increase for 2016 was driven by four key factors: Powdersville Water purchases all of its water and the rates from two out of the three Powdersville Water suppliers are scheduled to go up in 2016. Increased growth in the Powdersville Water service area has increased Powdersville Water staff activities such as tap installations, infrastructure upgrades, and repairs to existing mains and service lines. Continuing the multi-year plan to upgrade and/or replace aging water mains. Normal operating expense categories, such as materials costs, have increased slightly. “We are very pleased that, even with the dramatic increase in growth and our continuous commitment to excellence, we have been able to keep the rate increase to 3%,” Executive Director, Dyke Spencer explained. “This is a testament to the hard work and efficiency of a great staff of water professionals I have the privilege to work with.” With the increase, Powdersville Water water rates remain comparable to other similar sized utilities across the state. A typical Powdersville Water residential customer who uses 6,000 gallons per month can expect to pay $39.94 per month with the new rate in place, an increase of $1.16 per month.