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Higher utility rates included in Grandview's 2012 budget

GRANDVIEW - Besides an annual $20 car tab fee on all vehicles, Grandview residents in 2012 will also see higher water and sewer bills.

That's according to a 2012 budget the city council approved last night, Tuesday.

The budget includes a 6 percent hike in the city's water rate and a 7 percent increase in the wastewater rate.

Combined, the increases will cost the typical property owner an additional $3.42 per month. Grandview also raised both water and sewer rates in 2011.

The rate hikes will generate about $220,000 in additional revenue for 2012.

The city's current expense fund, which covers day-to-day expenses, is budgeted at $5 million for 2012.

The fund includes police expenditures in the amount of $2.6 million. That includes 25 new bullet-proof vests and the purchase of six radios.

With an anticipated increase of 11 percent in employee health insurance costs, Grandview is continuing some belt-tightening measures in 2012 that include no cost-of-living wage increases for employees.

Overall, the current expense fund is expected to have a balance of $1.05 million to start 2012 and a balance of $830,045 at the end of 2012.

In a budget overview document Mayor Norm Childress provided to council in October, he said 2012 will also see the replacement of eight vehicles, a laptop computer and the city's municipal accounting system.

The replacement costs will be carried out of the city's equipment rental fund, which is budgeted to spend $542,950 in 2012. Even with the expense, the rental fund is expected to end 2012 with $2.01 million in the account.

Other funds budgeted for next year include $4.8 million to be spent out of the water/sewer fund and $1.06 million out of the solid waste fund.

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