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Paoli Punts On Utility Rate Increases--For Now

Paoli residents filled their fire station in hopes during Tuesday's town council meeting. (Brock Turner, WTIU/WFIU News))

The Paoli Town Council is delaying a vote on a pair of proposed utility rate increases.

The council heard more than an hour of testimony last night  from concerned residents and business owners.

The water utility is proposing a 45% rate increase -- primarily to cover the increased cost of getting water from providers. The electricity rate increase is necessary, they say, because customer's rates have not increased since the 1980s.

Many residents at the meeting said they understood the issue, but they wished it had been better communicated. Many are still hopeful for a gradual increase.

Paoli Town Council Vice President Michael Harkness says he understands why residents are upset and promises to work with them. He wants to explore the possibility of increasing the deposit fees residents pay when they first access the utilities.

"I’m the one that asked for it to begin with. I think there are some situations with the electric deposits that I’m not comfortable with," says Harkness. 

The council is expected to vote on the increases during its meeting next month.

Want to contact your legislators about an issue that matters to you? Find out how to contact your senators and member of Congress here.

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