Budget Committee holds hearing on proposed rate hike - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Budget Committee holds hearing on proposed rate hike in New Orleans

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New Orleans, La - With the vote less than 24 hours away, New Orleans City Council members spent the afternoon and evening focused on lingering questions about the proposed sewer and water rate hike.  The council is set to vote on the issue Thursday.

Council President Stacy Head wants the vote on the rate increase delayed.  She peppered the Sewerage and Water Board with questions during the meeting.   

There was also public comment from individual citizens and from representatives of local organizations.

Todd Chambers is the President of the Greater New Orleans Hotel and Lodging Association. "Imagine working at hotel and you have to tell your guests, all of your guests, that in fact, they can't take a shower, that they can't drink the water in the hotel," said Chambers. "If we don't have the infrastructure to provide the basic services we need to support this tourism which is obviously critically important to our economy, then we're going to lose that edge." 

There were also citizens worried about seeing rates double over the next eight years. 

"The proposed change is back breaking on residents and on businesses," said one speaker.

"We oppose the rate because we can't afford it," said another.

There were also those who agree with the need for an increase, but agree with Council President Stacy Head about needing more time to study the issue.

Again, the council is set to vote on the proposed rate increase on Thursday. 

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