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Sewer Rate Discussion to Continue Next Month

While Parsippany officials voted to lower rates Tuesday night, Montville officials are considering taking back the rate reduction planned for January.

Montville Township Committee members voted to introduce an ordinance Tuesday that, if approved, would take back the sewer rate reductions originally planned to take effect in January.

A public hearing will be held on the ordinance on Dec. 11, at which time, should committee members vote in favor of it, rates would be restored to what they were before the reduction was approved.

After generating a multi-million dollar surplus over several years, the committee voted this summer to give ratepayers a sewer rate holiday for the remainder of this year and lower rates beginning in January to restore some of the surplus money. But last month, the committee learned that Montville will owe more money to the Parsippany-Troy Hills Wastewater Treatment Plant, which provides sewer services for the township, than originally anticipated.

New technology at the plant has indicated Parsippany was overpaying for services, for which the costs are divided amonst several municipalities. With the corrected informtion, the other municipalities would be forced to pay a higher percentage of cost.

The Parsippany Township Committee unanimously approved both a rebate for ratepayers and a sewer rate decrease to begin in the beginning of the next quarter Tuesday. Single-family homes and garden apartments could see a decrease of about $40 per year while businesses' rates would decrease by 90 cents per thousand gallons.

Montville Township Administrator Victor Canning said at the Dec. 11 meeting, the public will have the opportunity to speak on the issue, but that there is not much more that he can say in regards to other options for the township. Canning has said at previous meetings that if the township did not return the rates back to what they were before the decrease ordinance passed, Montville could run into a deficit.

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