One year ago, after moving the city’s water and sewer system to a Water and Sewer Enterprise Account, Mayor Carlo DeMaria and his financial team assured the City Council and taxpayers, that making the system self-sufficient would result in a more fiscally responsible fund that reflected its true costs and budgets accordingly.
Prior to last year, the city’s water and sewer accounts racked up a $1.7 million deficit for fiscal year 2012, a deficit that ended being funded out of the city’s general fund.
Last week, the Mayor was able to announce that the Massachusetts Department of Revenue (DOR) had certified retained earnings in the new Water and Sewer Enterprise fund at $259,995, a one-year turnaround of more than $1.9 million for those accounts.
According to Mayor Carlo DeMaria, a big part of that turnaround was the installation of new commercial and residential water meters, which have allowed the city to accurately track who has been using water.
“We knew the replacement of water meters across the city would be a large undertaking,” said DeMaria. “But the results speak for themselves. The new meters are allowing for more efficient administration and collection of water and sewer fees and the elimination of estimated bills means that both residents and business owners are being billed fairly and that the City is collecting appropriate payments.”
In the just completed fiscal year, the city’s water and sewer rates were able to cover all direct and indirect costs of operation of the Water and Sewer systems.