Residents prepare for new water and sewage bill fees

Shreveport, LA (KSLA)- Beginning January 1, 2011, residents of the City of Shreveport will begin seeing a new additional monthly fee on their monthly water and sewerage bill.

The City of Shreveport will join cities throughout the state and across the country, where residents are paying monthly garbage and recycling collection fees.

Residents will be charged two fees on the new bill next year: $2.50 per month for garbage collection along with another $2.50 per month for recycling collection.

The fees are expected to generate nearly $2 million annually, earmarked for the City of Shreveport's General Fund to offset costs related to solid waste.  The $2.50 monthly recycling collection fee will offset collection costs.

Here's a comparative look at what other cities are paying in garbage collection fees across the state with Shreveport's fees being far less than the average in Louisiana and in states of comparable populations.

Monroe, Louisiana - $ 23.26 per month

New Orleans, Louisiana - $ 23.00 per month

Alexandria, Louisiana - $ 20.00 per month

Natchitoches, Louisiana – $21.21 per month

West Monroe, Louisiana - $ 12.50 per month/for one can.  $9.50 for an additional can.

Mobile, Alabama - $17.83 per month

Memphis, Tennessee - $20.55 per month

"Without question, this will be a financial adjustment for our residents," says Mayor Cedric B. Glover.  "For years we have enjoyed the luxury of efficient, subsidized garbage collection, but given the current economic climate, the City Council has asked for the support and cooperation of citizens, given the current needs of our Solid Waste Department and the insufficiency of current revenue.  This step will allow us some relief, as we strive to continue providing a quality basic service to our citizens."

Garbage collection costs the City of Shreveport approximately $19 million annually to perform.  The new $2.50 collection fee covers less than 1/4th to 1/5th of that cost.

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