Judge: City Can't Raise Water Rates on Townships... Yet

( Hamilton County ) - The City of Cincinnati and Hamilton County are still sparring in the court room over water. Despite announcements made last year, there's still no agreement on ownership and operation of the Metropolitan Sewer District. 

Separate from that, a fight has been brewing over the rates parts of Hamilton County pay Cincinnati Water Works. On Thursday, a judge issued a temporary restraining order on a rate hike CWW wanted to institute beginning September 1. According to a release from the Hamilton County Township Association, "This TRO prohibits Cincinnati Water Works from raising the rates for all townships by as much as 26%." Currently, unincorporated parts of the county pay 1.25 times the rate that city residents pay for water. The proposed rate hike would've increased that multiplier to 1.43 times the base rate. That statement from HCTA calls the pricing policy "arbitrary and capricious." 

Representatives for the City of Cincinnati have said the rate hikes are necessary to cover operational costs. 

There is a task force that's been working on a study to find potential solutions, but its work is not yet finished.

A hearing is scheduled for September 12.

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