Lower Sewer Bill for Low-Income Seniors Coming Soon

The Hamilton County Board of County Commissioners passed a resolution that will bring much needed relief to eligible seniors on a fixed income. By unanimous vote, the Board approved a resolution that provides a 25% discount on their MSD bill to low-income seniors who qualify.

To be eligible for the discount, applicants must be 65 years of age or older, own the residence for which they are paying the sewer bill, and have an adjusted gross income for 2019 no greater than $32,800. These requirements mirror the income criteria for the Ohio Homestead Exemption. 

"The legislation we adopted addressed two of our top priorities: keeping rates flat, and providing relief for seniors struggling with their sewer bills," said Commission President Denise Driehaus. 

"The 25% discount will make a real impact in the lives of low-income seniors, while minimizing the number of shut offs in Hamilton County," said Commission Vice President Stephanie Summerow Dumas. "The 25% discount will also allow the Commissioners flexibility to  possibly include more residents in the future."

Commissioner Todd Portune said, "Our low-income seniors already know how to make a dollar stretch. But with costs rising all around them, we hope this reduction will alleviate some financial stress and make their bills affordable."

The Customer Assistance Program was recommended by the Rate Affordability Task Force (RATF), a group formed by Commissioners to improve affordability and equity of the current rate structure.  The RATF has made several recommendations that the Board has implemented including monthly billing, multi-family billing based on meter size, and a reduction of the minimum volumetric charge. Commissioners are seeking state legislative changes to expand the CAP program to all low-income households and they are exploring ways to help renters. 

The program is expected to go into effect on August 1, 2019. Check out the MSD website for more info. 

Posted on 04/23/2019