Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Whatever Happened to the Idea of Eliminating Multiple-Meter Discounts to Help Fund Our Water Services?

Ever since Council Members Ginger Pepper and Jim Shulman saved big multiple-meter businesses like Vanderbilt from suffering the loss of their discounts in order to help pay for our water system, the subject has never been raised again. The defense they used at the time was that the birth of the idea of cutting discounts did not give these behemoths enough time to plan their budgets around them. If the Nashville City Paper's prediction was right, the resulting cuts to 2006-2007 stormwater projects totalled in the millions of dollars.

Now that a year has passed since Ms. Pepper and Mr. Shulman pulled that possibility out of the budget, I am left with so many questions: how much time do businesses need to plan their budgets around lost discounts? How come large non-profits are entitled to an indefinitely open amount of time to plan for the loss of discounts while the rest of us common schmoes have to plan for fee increases and the elimination of sprinkler adjustments within the coming year?

The Metro Council votes tonight to increase our fees and adjustments for 2007-2008. Maybe next June they will eliminate the discounts for multiple-meter businesses and non-profits. Shouldn't two years be plenty of time for notifying and preparing those institutions that they have to kick in their fair share, too?

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