While everyone seems to be outraged over the 8+% increase in water rates proposed by the Mohawk Valley Water Authority, there is another part of our water bill that has just increased at almost double that rate . . . but with little notice . . . at least not until you get the bill.
That is the Oneida County Sewer Use Charge.
This was approved as one of the last acts of the County Legislature in 2007: Bill 423 to be exact, introduced by Messrs. Wood (Westmoreland area) and Porter (Boonville area) and seconded by Mrs. Mandryck (Ava area).
Was this done out of the public eye in secret? Of course not. It was done out in the open for all to see. The new rates were all set forth back in November. There was even a legal notice in the paper, and a public hearing down at the County Sewage Treatment Plant. And the Board of Legislators approved it in one of their famous public rubber stamping sessions with at 26-0 vote.
Of course, no where in the proposed rate schedule does it say that there is an INCREASE . . . .
And apparently no one on the legislature thought to ask or make an issue of it. Maybe no one raised a fuss because the bill was introduced and seconded by people from areas having nothing to do with the Part County Sewer District.
Everything was there out in the open . . . but no one noticed.
That's why it is a stealth increase.