Board begins effort to increase water, sewer rates

CAMDENTON – After a public hearing where no one spoke for or against a water and sewer rate increase, the Board of Aldermen approved the first reading of the rate increase for city users.

According to the city, the last time they raised rates was in March of 2015 and those rates need to be reviewed annually.

The proposed increase would have been higher than the actual one passed last week.

By using a past rate analysis sheet, it was suggested that the city would raise the water rates by $2 ($12 base rate for the first 2,000 gallons) and a 90 cent increase ($4.15) for each additional 1,000 gallons.

The sewer rates would see a base rate increase of 72 cents ($9, based on water usage) plus $2.45 (27 cent increase) for every 1,000 gallons of water used.

These rates would have raised the monthly bill for a 5,000 gallon a month customer to $46.32 ($6.84 a month, a 17 percent increase).

“After discussion on these rates and other matters, the Board directed that we should look at other scenarios and return back to discuss the issue further,” City Clerk Renee Kingston and City Administrator Jeff Hancock said in their report to the board.

However, in April city staff stated they were not comfortable with the rate calculation sheets that were used in the past and that other water and sewer charges should be reviewed.

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Saturated ground, wind, blamed for area damage

CAMDEN COUNTY – Though the news of flooding in the Missouri has mainly focused on other parts of the state, some residents in the county have also suffered because of the rain.

A saturated ground in combination with wind sent a tree onto a house on Robin Hood Lane. The other danger with heavy rain is water over the road or over low water crossings.

“When we receive a call in reference to excessive water over roads, we take it seriously,” said a spokesman for the Camden County Sheriff’s Department (CCSD). “Water over the roadways can be very deceiving. It may not look that deep or swift. It is not worth taking the chance.”

Vehicles can float or hydroplane in relatively little water which makes going off low water bridges hazardous. In many instances, if the vehicle goes off the bridge, it will turn on its side or top, making escape more difficult.

“We have had deputies out in the flooded areas checking on residents, reporting on property damage and road impassibility. The residence on Robin Hood Lane is a total loss because of the wind and the ground being saturated with water,” the spokesman said. “At this point, the number of roadways off the main highways and state routes of Camden County are impassable and too numerous to count.

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Dollars denied for Historical Society reenactment

OSAGE BEACH – A request to the city from the Camden County Historical Society and Museum for event money did not receive a vote at last week’s Board of Aldermen meeting.

The funds were requested to support a Civil Wear Reenactment event that will take place in June of 2018. The request was for $2,000.

The city sponsored this event in 2015 for $2,000 but that was prior to the Community Event Support program that was created in 2016.

So far this year the city has fielded five requests for money from the $10,000 set aside in the budget for these types of requests.

The money in this fund has dwindled with the approval of some (not all) of the requests this year. Those requests that were granted and their amounts are:

1. Firefighter Challenge (approved January 3, 2017) $1,000
2. Lake Race-Festival of Speed (approved March 2, 2017) $2,500
3. Bike Fest (approved March 2, 2017) $2,000

Since the budget amount is only $10,000 the city has a remaining balance of only $4,500.

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$300 in prizes for Dogwood Business Hop

CAMDENTON – Despite unfavorable weather, the Dogwood Business Hop was deemed a success by organizer Bill Wood, owner of Bill’s Art Center and Gallery.

The main reason for the event, which took place during the Dogwood Festival, was to draw visitors to local businesses and get them in the door of the participating business.

Anyone wanting to participate would pick up a ticket from any business with a dogwood flower painted on the window. On the back of the ticket was a list of all participating businesses. The person would then go to these businesses and have someone at the business sign the ticket.

The one who visited the most businesses would win a $100 prize and others could win one of many $25 prizes. Wood said they only had about 10 or 11 participants but they did give out a total of $300.

The prizes were gift certificates that could only be used at one of the participating businesses.

“The idea is to get people in and seeing what’s in there, what do they do,” Wood said. “We had over 20 businesses participating this year.”

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