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Benson City Council OKs utility rate increases to go into effect in Jan.

BENSON -- The Benson City Council approved increases in the city's utility rates at the regular meeting Monday.

The rate increases take effect on Jan. 1, according to city manager Rob Wolfington, and include water, sewer, electric, garbage and taxes. An average residential user of the minimum amount of water would see a 5.3 percent increase in utility costs. An average high-rate water user, likely a resident with an automatic lawn sprinkler system, would have a 9.2 percent increase and a business, such as a convenience store, would see a 2.2 percent increase.

In other action, the council OK'd the purchase of additional automatic meter reader units, for $51,500. The purchase is part of the city's on-going effort to install FM transmitters on utility meters in the city. The council also accepted a $5,000 grant from GameTime Playground Equipment. The grant will be used to fund a $12,000 playground set, designed for children ages 2 to 5 years, which will be installed next spring in Ambrush Park. The remaining funding will come from the city's general fund reserve account and from community efforts.

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