Beaumont City Council voted Tuesday, July 15, to amend the city’s code of ordinance Section 22.02.001 to reflect an increase in water service rates by 5 percent.
The increase will take effect Oct. 1 and will fund a major capital improvement effort to enhance the water and sewer system. The effort includes $15.5 million to complete projects currently under construction and $3.5 million to fund new clarifiers at the sewer treatment plant, the council agenda states. The city also plans to refund $63.9 million in outstanding revenue bonds in order to achieve a lower interest rate and savings, according to the agenda.
“The proposed rate increase of 5 percent is required to fund the new debt service after considering the estimated savings from the refunded issues as well as the debt related to the Automated Metering Infrastructure and Leak Detection project and the recently financed equipment,” City Manger Kyle Hayes said. “The rate increase is projected to produce an additional $2.15 million in revenues annually.”
In other city business, after considering bids from 13 vendors, the council voted to award a $242,298 contract to ARC Abatement of Houston for asbestos abatement and demolition of the Castle Motel at 1125 N. 11th Street.
The number and severity of code violations resulted in the structures being tagged as unsafe for both tenants and the public. Since the buildings were vacated, the motel has only deteriorated further and continues to be open and accessible, despite attempts by the owner to secure it. It has been determined that for health and safety reasons, it is necessary to demolish the structures, the council agenda states.
At this time no date has been set to begin demolition, an ARC representative told the Examiner.