JAY — Selectmen will hold a public hearing Monday, Jan. 24, on setting the sewer rates for 2011-12.

The hearing is scheduled for 6 p.m. at the Jay Middle School cafeteria.

Currently, sewer users pay a flat rate of $315 per unit, which is equivalent to one residence. Taxpayers pick up the remainder of the sewer system cost. A three-family apartment building would be charged for three units. A car wash is charged three units per bay.

A Sewer Committee has been studying the rate method for about a year and plans to make recommendations to the board, including changing to charging for sewer by how water is used.

The committee will recommend setting a base rate and a per cubic foot rate to go along with it, Town Manager Ruth Cushman said.

The committee will also recommend setting a goal of $356,000 for revenues for the coming year, the same as last year, according to meeting minutes.

The panel seeks to allow sewer users to compare how much they used for this year and what they use after July 1, when the next fiscal year begins.

The current year’s budget for the Sewer Department is $816,285, Superintendent Mark Holt said. Of that, $534,575 is for operation and maintenance and $281,710 for debt service payment.

The committee worked hard to achieve what the selectmen wanted, he said.

Selectmen want those who use more water to pay more, and those who use less to pay less, and those who conserve to be rewarded, Holt said.

Selectmen are also scheduled to set the price for the four- and six-yard Dumpsters that the town has leased to businesses and others in town, Cushman said.

The board voted to do away with Dumpster service earlier this month.

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