Residents speak out against proposed hike in water rates

CLEVELAND - Residents of Ward 9 made their position clear.  They don't want to see an increase in Cleveland water rates.

The city is proposing a fixed charge increase in July of $11 a quarter and additional increases in usage beginning in 2012.  Director of Public Utilities Barry Withers says consumption is down and the extra money is needed to maintain the quality of the water system.

But residents say they just can't afford it.  "You got electric bills going up, gas bills going up, the price of gas going up, food going up and now you wanna jack up something that shouldn't cost an arm and a leg," one man said.

The final decision is up to the city council, which is expected to vote in late June or July.

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