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November 11, 2013

Polls open today for sewer rate increase decision

NORMAN — Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. today in the Norman special election to raise sewer rates to pay for part of an estimated $63 million in upgrades at the city’s southside sewer plant.

If the proposed rate increase is approved, the average utility bill will go up about $3.74 a month. Average commercial rates will go up by $7.39 per month. Sewer rates have not risen since 1996.

The proposition includes an increase to the base rate and an increase to the commodity or use rate. Even if voters approve the rate increase, Norman’s wastewater cost will remain below average compared to other Oklahoma municipalities.

The city’s current base rate is $3.90 per month. Voters will be asked to approve a $1.10 per month increase, raising the base rate from $3.90 to $5 monthly.

The city’s current commodity rate is $1.60 per 1,000 gallons of treated wastewater. Voters will be asked to increase the commodity rate by $1.10 per 1,000 gallons used. That will bring the commodity rate to $2.70 per 1,000 gallons used.

Fifty-one Norman precincts are open today. For more information, call the Cleveland County Election Board, 366-0210.

Also today: Lexington voters will consider an additional half-percent sales tax to boost the city’s general fund.

The current sales tax rate is 3.5 percent. If approved, the increase would bring the sales tax to 4 percent.

Mustang voters will consider two school bond propositions.

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