Pierre pays 8% more for water after City Commission passes budget

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Published: Sep. 25, 2020 at 6:31 PM CDT
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PIERRE, S.D. - The Pierre City Commission passed the city’s 2021 budget.

The $53.7 million budget includes no increases to wastewater or electric utility rates. However, it does include an 8% water utility rate increase, which was voted on by the public in order to help pay for the City’s new drinking water treatment facility.

“One of our top priorities is always to keep our utilities affordable,” said Mayor Steve Harding. “I’m pleased we have been able to finalize the 2021 budget without impacting electric and wastewater rates.”

Harding went on to say that most of the 2021 budget will be used to cover operating costs and equipment needs.

“All of our major ongoing projects, the drinking water treatment facility, wastewater treatment plant rehabilitation, and outdoor pool project, were funded outside of the 2021 budget,” Harding said. “That allows us to focus the 2021 budget on the city’s basic needs.”

Those needs include $3.2 million for street projects.

“We receive more constituent contacts about street conditions than any other issue in the community. The goal is for these additional street dollars to help us get farther ahead on major street projects.”

The city’s budget runs on a calendar year. The majority of the city’s funds comes from sales tax, the rates paid for utilities and a small property tax allotment.