MT. VERNON — The Mt. Vernon city council approved an increase to water rates for the villages that buy water from the city at Tuesday night’s meeting. Water districts affected included Woodlawn, Waltonville, Bluford, Dix-Kell, Northeast Water District, and Belle Rive.
The increase amounts to about five cents per thousand gallons of water. The Rend Lake Conservancy District has put the same increase on the city for buying water, and the city’s finance director Merle Hollman told the council that the city is passing off the same increase onto the neighboring communities and would not make any additional revenue with the increase. City council member Jim Rippy understands the need for the increase, but he says residents pay too much for water as it is.
The council also gave the city manager permission to seek bids to purchase four thermal imaging cameras for the Mt. Vernon Fire Department and waived the bidding process to purchase two dump trucks for the Public Works Department. The estimated costs for the cameras would be $36,000 and about $250,000 for the two dump trucks.