No better deal for villages

SALEM — For water customers outside the city of Salem, Utilities Commission Chairman Bob Hodgson said “there is no better deal.”

That includes Perry Township and the villages of Leetonia and Washingtonville — they all get the same deal.

Hodgson said he felt the need to comment based on some of what he’s been reading related to Salem’s water and what’s going on in the villages.

The rate Salem charges Washingtonville is the same as the rate charged to Leetonia and to customers outside the city in Perry Township — that’s $3.81 per 1,000 gallons or $2.85 per 100 cubic feet, with 100 cubic feet equal to 748 gallons.

The villages charge their customers more than what Salem charges the villages in order to cover the costs associated with operating a water distribution system. That would includes costs associated with water towers.

Officials from Leetonia and Washingtonville met recently to discuss the idea of Leetonia selling water to Washingtonville due to an issue Washingtonville is having with its water tower, which needs repainted. Salem officials said they have not been contacted by Washingtonville or Leetonia regarding this latest discussion about Leetonia providing water to Washingtonville.

Leetonia is contracted to purchase a certain amount of water each day and can add customers within the village, but according to Hodgson and Utilities Superintendent Don Weingart, Leetonia would need permission from the commission to sell water to someone outside the village.

If Leetonia chose to sell water to Washingtonville, the village would have to secure approval from Salem first.

The city recently repainted some of their water tanks, which are larger than the one in Washingtonville, both inside and out. The cost for the Highland tank project was just under $400,000 and the Stewart Road tank was $475,000.

mgreier@salemnews.net

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