NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – If you live in Northampton, your water and sewer base rate is expected to go up by more than 200 percent. The Northampton Mayor says this change has to do with Coca Cola leaving the city.
Coca Cola used to pay for a quarter of the city’s water and sewer enterprise and now that they plan to leave in December, which means the city is going to have to find the funding from other sources.
Northampton Mayor Gina-Louise Sciarra said this proposed base rate increase is to stabilize that part of the budget. If the city council approves the base rate increase on the 13th, you’ll see an increase in your water base charge as well as the addition of a sewer base charge, totaling in a 210 percent rate increase that will show up in your next quarterly bill after July 1st.
“I don’t bring it to the city lightly but it’s something we have to do to stabilize our water and sewer enterprise. Water is one of the most critical utilities that we have and I’m really sorry that Coke is putting us in this position,” said Mayor Sciarra.
The mayor said they’re choosing to change the base rate as opposed to usage so people can use income eligible program if they need them. If you are looking for assistance, she recommends reaching out to the city assessor’s office.