Amended water meter ordinance gets final OK
Published 1:07 pm Thursday, November 30, 2017
STANFORD – The Lincoln County Fiscal Court passed a second reading of an amended ordinance that allocates three percent of the water meter fees collected to water companies for administrative services.
The $4 per month water meter fees, which will go into effect Jan. 1, will be used to fund the regional Bluegrass 911 Communications.
In the original ordinance, water companies were to receive two percent of the fees collected but after some negotiation, Lincoln County Fiscal Court magistrates agreed to increase the percentage to three percent.
Lincoln County Judge-Executive Jim Adams said Tuesday during the fiscal court’s regular meeting that Laurel County recently implemented water meter fees to fund 911 services.
“There was little or no fanfare there at all and they (water companies) get one percent there to collect,” he said.
County Attorney Daryl Day said a letter was sent by attorney Jonathan Baker, who represents Stanford Water, as well as the City of Hustonville, stating that Hustonville and Stanford agreed to collect water meter fees if they were given six percent.
“I told him it wasn’t my decision, it was the fiscal court’s decision, both Garrard County and Lincoln County…my recommendation would be, as a member of the 911 Board also, leave it at three percent,” Day said. “If Laurel County can do it for one percent, phone companies are collecting the 911 fees on phone lines for a percent-and-a-half, I still have a hard time understanding how they need six percent of that to collect it.”
Day said he thinks three percent is being “very kind.”
“If they still refuse to collect it, honestly, I don’t want to have to do it, but I think we’re at the point that we’re just going to have to litigate this and let the courts decide if they have to collect it,” he said.
Magistrate David Faulkner said the water companies are asking for almost $800 per month to add one item on the water meter.
“Basically, they’re wanting to make money. They’re wanting to make money off of the 911 service and they would be the only ones that would be making money,” Faulkner said. “The court makes no money from it.”
Faulkner also reiterated that the quarter-fee that was put on water meters several years ago is technically money owed.
“We haven’t pushed that but that’s several thousands of dollars that they’re in the rears, based on our ordinance,” he said. “I just can’t figure out why they’re doing this.”
A motion to approve the second reading was passed unanimously with Magistrate Joe Stanley adding that he thinks the three percent for water companies is reasonable.