WILMINGTON — Budgets and rates were put to bed Thursday at the final Wilmington City Council meeting of 2021.
Councilmembers performed the third and final readings for two respective ordinances approving the 2022 city budget and an increase in the water rates.
The rate would increase in the city between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2022. After that, the amount of the annual rate increases would be less than the first year.
The area that would see an increase outside the city limits is in the over 200,000 gallons for premises — going from $9.64 to $10.12 next year, then $10.43 in 2023, and then $10.74 in 2024.
Councilmember Matt Purkey addressed the increase, adding it is better to do it now instead of doing it further down the road.
“Rate increases are never to be taken lightly,” said Purkey. “But I’d rather hit everyone for a dime a year than come at you 10 years later for a dollar.”
Mayor John Stanforth, at an earlier meeting, praised the budget of $69.8 million.
“This is a responsible budget with spending matching revenue. It reflects investments in our infrastructure and future,” said Stanforth, at the earlier meeting. “With investments like beginning the rebuild of Davids Drive, expanding transit services to better serve our citizens, and moving forward with construction drawings of the Sugartree Corridor, council and our citizens can be confident their government is at work to meet the present and growing needs of the community.”
Also during council:
• The council indicated support for creating a Municipal Incentive District in order to facilitate infrastructure improvements in support of a proposed residential development project at the southwest area of Wilmington.
Councilmember and Judiciary Committee Chair Matt Purkey indicated the developers have permission to build on the property from the owners, and they wished to receive support from council.