Hermiston water rates to increase 16 percent

HERMISTON, Ore. (AP) — The Hermiston City Council has voted to increase water and sewer rates by 16 percent.

The East Oregonian reports the money will help pay for the city's new $27.2 million recycled water treatment plant.

Rates will go up four percent every six months starting in January and ending on July 1, 2015.

According to a rate study conducted on behalf of the city, Hermiston's combined average monthly water and sewer bill of $56.23 a month is the lowest among Eastern Oregon cities of comparable size.

When that bill climbs to an estimated $65.78 a month in 2015, it will be higher than what Baker City currently charges but lower than Pendleton, La Grande, Ontario and The Dalles.