Aldermen consider rate for Punkin Water customers

Published 6:22 am Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Future billing will include $12.25 surcharge for the area

Plans for the city of Oxford taking over the Punkin Water Association are moving forward.

On Tuesday, the Oxford Board of Aldermen heard the first reading of an ordinance that would set the rates for its new customers. No rate change was proposed for existing Oxford Utilities customers.

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“This is only for the current Punkin customers,” said Mark Levy, special projects director for the city of Oxford.

The board voted in early 2022 to take over the system and provide water for Punkin Water Association customers, who had been complaining about poor water quality for years. 

Once Oxford Utilities takes over the PWA and starts providing city water, former PWA customers will pay a minimum of $9.74 a month for up to 2,000 gallons of water, then the rate is $4.87 per thousand gallons used. It is the same rate that any OU customer outside the city limits is paying. However, the Punkin customers will be charged a monthly $12.25 surcharge.

A public hearing on the proposed rates and ordinance change will be held at 5 p.m. on March 19 at City Hall. 

The PWA is expected to transfer its water source and franchise to Oxford by early summer, according to an update provided by PWA to its customers. At that time, the PWA will begin the process to dissolve the corporation.

After the transition, the existing wells will be closed and all of the equipment, except for the large tank, will be removed. 

New electronic read-only meters have been installed. The pipeline work to connect Oxford to the PWA is expected to be completed this month. The construction of a pumping station is expected to be completed in May, according to the PWA.