Evanston raises water rate, remains competitive in Cook County

Tori Latham, Assistant City Editor

Water rates in Evanston are still the lowest in north suburban Cook County communities despite a 10 percent increase that went into effect Jan. 1, the city announced Thursday. 

The water rate jumped from $2.65 per 1,000 gallons in 2014 to $2.91 per 1,000 gallons in 2015, according to a city news release. This results in a typical single-family residential customer paying $21 more for water in 2015 than they did in 2014.

The extra money will be used to improve Evanston’s 80- to 100-year-old water mains, according to the city, which said in a news release it also wants to set up a long-term fund for water system renovations.

“If we don’t get this under control and get this infrastructure done, then we are going to have a series of catastrophic failures and we’re going to be adding onto the water bill like we had to do the sewer bill,” Ald. Donald Wilson (4th) said at a city council meeting in November where the increase was passed.

The sewer rate has not increased since 2004, and previous increases throughout the years raised more than $200 million for sewer system improvements from 1992 to 2008, according to the news release.

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