Cochrane town council has approved water and wastewater rate increases that will see the average Cochrane residence pay a combined total of $6.77 monthly or $81.24 per annum starting Apr. 1.

Wastewater rates will rise by $4.24 per month on average based on the 12-month rolling average usage of 13.5 cubic metres. Of that, $3.29 per month is a result of contracted YYC wastewater treatment costs. The rest is due to inflationary pressures being experienced by the town.

The new water rate is also impacted by inflationary costs but also reflects the cost of a new, more aggressive water loss mitigation program.

In 2021, Cochrane’s water loss was 552 million litres, which is equivalent to the annual water use of 3,270 homes. It is worth $773,000 invoiced or $5.9 million in water licence value.

The town notes these are only average figures and utility usage will impact each property differently.

Regional wastewater servicing

In a related decision, the council supported a letter of intent for the continuing evaluation of regional wastewater servicing options.

The letter expresses Cochrane's willingness to contribute up to $50,000 towards the completion of a technical feasibility study to evaluate the identified options for sub-regional servicing.  Town administration will also continue to participate in a working group composed of representatives from Cochrane, Rocky View County, the City of Calgary, and Harmony Advanced Water System Corporation (HAWSCo).

Additionally, the letter indicates the council’s support for a grant application to the Alberta Community Partnership (ACP) program to help fund the technical feasibility study.