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Sycamore implements radium water treatment fee

March 10, 2017 GMT

SYCAMORE – Sycamore residents will see a radium treatment fee of $5 or more on their water bills starting in May.

The Sycamore City Council unanimously approved an ordinance on Monday for a radium treatment fee to be added and highlighted on the city’s utility bill.

The fee increase based on the size of the user’s water meter. Most residential users and some small businesses have water meters of five-eighths or three-quarters of an inch, meaning they will pay the lowest monthly fee of $5.

The cost goes up to $8.15 a month for a 1-inch water meter, $15.22 a month for a 1.5-inch meter and is priced at increasing levels up to a $342.71 monthly fee for a 6-inch meter.

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City Manager Brian Gregory said highlighting the radium treatment fee will assure people that the city is continuing to comply with Illinois Environmental Protection Agency standards.

“This will also free up some dollars to make some necessary capital improvements to our water system infrastructure,” he said.

The radium fee was proposed during previous City Council meetings as a way to meet the increasing costs of radium treatment and alter the fee structure to support future capital improvements.

The city is nearing the end of a 10-year contract for radium removal, and the cost is set to more than double in August from $310,000 to $647,200 annually.

The process also removes barium from the water, which has led to more frequent media exchanges and contributed to the higher treatment cost.