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Shipshewana rate ordinance public hearing set

The LaGrange County Regional Utility District will be holding a public hearing at 6 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 25, regarding proposed changes to the Shipshewana West district’s rate ordinance. The meeting will be held at the Wolfe Building in Shipshewana.

The board approved the ordinance on first reading at Monday’s meeting, setting it up for the public hearing and possible action after the hearing.

The board was told that changes to the rate ordinance would accommodate all of the changes in the district’s expenses. The ordinance also adds a schedule of connection fees for the service area and notes that the district will also collect the Town of Shipshewana’s connection fees.

In June, the board was told that the district would consider a $9.45 per month increase for Shipshewana West costumers. The majority of that increase was due to changes in state law that reduced the youth camp Equivalent Domestic Unit (EDU) from 0.267 to 0.125 and the switch at the Michiana Church Camp from a flat rate to a metered rate. Of the $9.45 increase, the district noted that $4.32 is from the change at the church camp, $2.34 from the change in EDUs at the youth camp, $0.72 due to an increase in charges from the Town of Shipshewana, and the remainder due to inflation, future replacement costs and required coverage.

The district is looking at splitting the increase into two phases, with the first shortly after the changes are approved and the second part after the first of the year.

The board decided Monday that along with the required notice through publication, the district would send out a letter to each ratepayer letting them know of the public hearing.

In other business:

The board promoted Adam Sams to the position of operational manager following the resignation of Don Skinner, who left the district for another position.

The district plans to discuss a shortfall at Fawn River Crossing with the LaGrange County Redevelopment Commission in the upcoming months.

The utility district board’s September meeting was changed from September 18 to Wednesday, Sept. 17, at 6 p.m.