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Council Looks at Costs of Combined Sewer Overflow

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The topic of addressing the city's combined sewage overflow problems returned to City Council discussions Tues. 

City management is hoping negotiations with the US Environmental Protection Agency conclude soon, so the city can resolve the CSO.

Regardless of the solution, the cost is expected to be about $200 million.

The city also has a backlog of about $50 million in other stormwater projects.

To cover the overall cost, City Manager Patrick Urich says Peoria will likely issue bonds, to be repaid from two sources.

"We may have to raise our sewer rates in order to cover the construction costs of the CSO and then pay for the maintenance side with a stormwater utility fee," Urich said.

The stormwater utility fee will go into effect next summer and will be about $3.00 per 1,000 square feet of impermeable surface. That includes driveways, rooftops, sidewalks and other hard surfaces.

In Other Business:

Peoria City Council member Beth Jensen wants the City of Peoria and Peoria Township to study the benefits of consolidating the two governmental bodies.

"I think consolidating the township may be a real possibility for us to save some money and to work more efficiently," Jensen said.

Jensen last night told fellow council members she’d like to see the study completed before the council undertakes 2019 budget discussions next fall. The study must consider the impact city consolidation with Peoria township might have on other townships that are partially within city limits.