by Megan Schiffres
KILMARNOCK—Council chambers at the Kilmarnock Town Hall were filled to capacity Monday for a public hearing on proposed increases to water and wastewater utility rates.
Members of the public spoke mainly in opposition, arguing that any increases to utility rates would impact the most vulnerable of the community.
Following public comment, council voted unanimously (5-0) to return the matter to the administration and finance committee for reconsideration. Council members Rebecca Nunn, Keith Butler, Curtis Smith, Les Spivey and Michael Sutherland voted in favor of reconsidering the proposed increases at the committee’s February meeting. Council member Emerson Gravatt was absent.
The committee will meet at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, February 7, at Town Hall, 1 North Main Street, Kilmarnock.
“Every year that they’re increased, we don’t get an increase to our income,” said resident Barbara Ednar, who claimed to speak for those in town on a fixed income like herself.
Kilmarnock BrewHaus owner Don Lee said the cost of utility rate increases for businesses in Kilmarnock would ultimately be passed on to customers and would hurt the overall economy of the town. However, Lee also said he didn’t think the town should be subsidizing the cost of the water and wastewater utilities….