Price of Water to Increase in City of Katy

Courtesy George Slaughter

CITY OF KATY (CoveringKaty)—The Katy City Council Monday night passed an ordinance that increases the price City of Katy residents will pay for water by 20 cents per 1,000 gallons of water used.  The West Harris County Regional Water Authority Groundwater Reduction user fee is going up from $1.23 to $1.43 per 1,000 gallons of water.

The fee increase affects single-family residential, multi-family residential, and commercial structure units that are in the City of Katy.  It will not effect people who live in the unincorporated areas.  The rate hike takes effect January 1, 2017.

City Administrator Byron Hebert said the authority meets late in the year to consider its rates, and then informs the cities accordingly. The cities, in turn, must choose to update their own rates to be effective January 1.

The authority raised the fee at its November 9 meeting by 37 cents, from $2.28 to $2.65 per 1,000 gallons of water. However, Katy residents pay a lesser fee because part of the city is in Waller County, where a new water well is expected to come online in 2017.

Hebert said if Katy were only in Harris and Fort Bend counties, residents would be charged the $2.65 rate.

“We’re absorbing 17 cents (per 1,000 gallons),” Hebert said. “The only reason…is we’re about to start a new well at Highway 90 in Waller County. When that well comes on, it should help us.”

According to the authority’s web site, the Texas Legislature established the authority in 2001 to “negotiate for long-term water supply and to design and construct an entirely new infrastructure to deliver surface water into our homes.”

Hebert said the authority must post its meetings.

“Every December they send out a notice to us stating they have a board meeting coming up and they’re proposing a fee,” Hebert said. “They usually do this by December 7, they’ve had their meeting, and then we take it to council.”

Hebert said the fee is imposed on the city.

“We’re not trying to make money on this,” Hebert said. “We’re just trying to recoup what we’re being charged. With another Waller County well coming on, we thought we are able to charge and additional 20 cents instead of an additional 37 cents.”

In other action, the council:

  • Recognized the Sugar Land Skeeters professional baseball team for winning its first Atlantic League Championship.
  • Recognized the Keep Katy Beautiful presentation of the Katy Proud Business Award to Agave Estates, 1016 FM 1463.
  • Recognized the Keep Katy Beautiful 2016 Adopt-a-Wreath participants.
  • Accepted $500 from the Williams family of McKinney, Texas, for the dedication of a memorial tree at the Katy City Park Arboretum.
  • Accepted $1,000 from Raising Cane’s, 410 S. Mason Rd., for the City Parks and Recreation Department.
  • Passed an ordinance to expand the boundaries of the tax increment reinvestment zone near and at the Katy Mills Mall.
  • Approved a $245 dues payment for the Texas Downtown Association.
  • Approved a $564.08 dues payment for the Houston-Galveston Area Council.
  • Approved an event request for the Katy Old-Fashioned Christmas Festival scheduled from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday. The event was rescheduled to Saturday due to inclement weather on the previous date. Avenues B and C between 2nd and 3rd Streets, and 2nd and 3rd Streets between Avenues A and D will be closed for the event.
  • Approved an event request for the WoodCreek Junior High PTA’s 5K/1 Mile Fun Run, scheduled from 7-9 a.m. on February 18, 2017.
  • Approved a $14,575 Convention and Tourism Bureau (CTB) hotel occupancy tax grant application for Katy Market Day, for an outdoor billboard, a shopping and dining guide brochure, and web site design and development.
  • Approved a $120,000 CTB hotel occupancy tax grant for the Southland Conference, for the 2017 Basketball Tournament, scheduled for March 8-12, 2017, at the Leonard E. Merrill Center.
  • Approved a $113,500 CTB hotel occupancy tax grant for the Wild West Brewfest, for the Wild West Brewfest scheduled for May 5-6, 2017, at Katy Mills Mall.
  • Approved a $61,415 CTB hotel occupancy tax grant for the City of Katy, for the Taste of Katy Tailgate and chili cookoff, scheduled for February 4, 2017, at the Jack F. Rhodes Memorial Stadium.
  • Awarded a $3,000,723.10 bid to Mills Equipment Rental, LLC, of Missouri City, Texas, for the proposed construction of water, draining facilities, paving and appurtenances to serve the Katy Town Square Phase 1 and Phase 2. The council also adopted a resolution rejecting bids received November 3 for this project.
  • Awarded a $415,800 bid to Tank Builders, Inc. of Euless, Texas, for the installation of a new welded roof on an existing 1 million-gallon ground storage tank at Water Plant No. 2, 5450 Franz Rd. The total project cost is $438,808. The council also adopted a resolution authorizing the use of reserve funds on this project.
  • Adopted a resolution rejecting all bids received December 7 for a 500,000-gallon elevated tank rehabilitation at Water Plant No. 2. The request for bids will be reissued due to an error in the original request for proposals.
  • Adopted a resolution agreeing to require the dedication of a 50-foot right-of-way 25610 and 25710 Clay Rd. upon release of those properties from the City of Houston’s extraterrestrial jurisdiction to the City of Katy and requiring compliance with the City of Houston’s Major Thoroughfare Plan and Freeway Plan for future development of the site.
  • Approved a resolution authorizing Mayor Fabol Hughes to accept a water line easement from Aristotle Classical Academy for 0.551 acres, in Harris County, for waterline construction.
  • Adopted a resolution authorizing the mayor to enter into an agreement for engineering design services with Costello, Inc., for a Cane Island Branch Flood Protection Planning Study for the City of Katy.
  • Adopted a resolution approving application for a drilling permit by EHRA, Inc., to install one private water well to serve Cane Island Parkway, Phase 1.
  • Adopted a resolution authorizing the mayor to enter into a license agreement with Agendaease Inc. for agenda and packet management software licenses.
  • Adopted a resolution authorizing the mayor to sign an interlocal agreement with Waller-Harris Emergency Services District No. 200.
  • Adopted a resolution authorizing the mayor to enter into a mutual aid fire protection agreement.
  • Passed an ordinance adopting amendments to the city budget for the 2015-2016 fiscal year. Under the amendment, general revenues are up $3,268,712.19, or 13%, from the last revised budget of $25,454,052.19. General expenditures are down $154,185, or 3%, from the last revised budget of $4,782,259. Enterprise revenues are up $1,367,129.66, or 22%, from the last revised budget of $6,150,129.66. Enterprise expenditures are down $436,874, or 7%, from the last revised budget of $6,483,461.29.
  • Passed an ordinance appointing Sandra Byrd, a longtime Katy community volunteer, to the City of Katy Keep Katy Beautiful Board.

1 Comment

  1. If you scroll to the end of the article and see some budget information for the city the tale of the tape is instructive.

    It says revenues are UP even from their last revised budget and expenses are down. Let’s split that open a bit.

    Revenues are up and a major component of that is our increased property values. Not a surprise to anyone who looks at their tax statement showing how the appraisal district is inflating our property values by 10%/year or more across the board. Our property tax bills are going up at 10%/yr. compounded! No wonder the city has some spare change to work with. At least they did lower the rate they charge us due to that inflation, but NOT the school district.

    Is anyone out here making more money this year than last? Of those who are has their increase been anywhere near 10% / year? Taxpayers are going backwards while local government is scooping up all the loose change they can find and telling us they need it.
    News flash, WE NEED IT MORE!

    As for the City of Katy, expenses are down. I find that hopefully to be a sign of responsible management and thank the city elders for staying on top of things and getting more value for our tax dollar. Now maybe they can give some of it back to us and pass along the same suggestion to our Katy ISD school board.

    Some may have come here for the education, but many are leaving because they can’t afford to stay.

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