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WL City Council considers new fees

A new storm water fee for West Lafayette residents and business owners will be up for a first vote Monday night.

The city has to raise funds to maintain its sewer system in accordance with state and federal requirements.

Councilor Peter Bunder says this piece of legislation is long overdue for the community.

"Well I think it's time for a storm water utility and for the city to work toward improving water quality in the Wabash River. I think we're about 30 years behind in terms of confronting the issue of runoff, I'm glad we're finally doing it."

Currently, West Lafayette is covering sewer maintenance costs with other city funds, and officials say this is delaying other development projects.

Bunder says the proposed legislation is a step in the right direction for the city.

"It benefits the community because it benefits the Wabash River, it benefits the environment in which we live and it also gives the city a new source of funds. You can't raise taxes any more, the property tax cap eliminates that possibility. So fees are the new taxes."

Councilors are set to discuss the issue and field public comments at Monday’s meeting at 6:30 p.m.

If the fee is approved, residents would be billed starting in 2014.