KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) The Killeen City Council is considering a proposal to charge home and business owners an additional utility fee to fund repairs for old, damaged streets.
“It would be on residents’ utility bills (and) would be specifically designated in a separate fund for the sole purpose of street repair within the city,” Killeen Councilman Butch Menking said.
The money raised through the fee would pay the cost of the contractors, personnel and material.
“They unfortunately been underfunded for a number a years, almost ten years and we are at a point now that they need to be repaired” Menking said.
The amount of the additional fee hasn’t been set.
“The figures I’ve seen are $1.70 to $7 per month. We haven’t tweaked it down to the exact amount,” Menking said.
Killeen Councilman Gregory Johnson, however, questions the need for the new fee.
“It concerns me that each year the city can find millions of dollars to construct new roads, but only $330,000 to fund repairs on current roads and infrastructure,” he said.
“Killeen can’t continue to tax and fee its way out of a financial slump. Smart government, economic development and relief from unfunded and partially funded state mandates are the real long term solutions to our financial problems,” he said.
“This proposed street fee will cost taxpayers an additional $6 million per year and is supposed to be used to repair city roads, which should’ve been already taken care of with the millions of dollars that we pay each year on our water bill and property taxes,” he said.
Menking says the proposal is in its preliminary stages and a lot more has to be discussed before the council can take a vote on the proposal.
The council next meets on Nov. 20.