Turning on the faucet and going to a restaurant will cost more soon in West Columbia and nearby areas.
City Council gave final approval Tuesday to higher water and sewer bills as well as a new tax on dining out, take-out meals, some snacks and bar tabs.
The utility rate increase adds up to $4.50 a month to the typical residential bill for residents of the Lexington County city and about double that for those in nearby neighborhoods. It takes effect Friday.
West Columbia provides water and sewer to about a fifth of the county’s 280,000 residents, city officials estimate.
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The new meal tax of two pennies on the dollar is similar to that in nearby communities. After taking effect Sept. 1, it is estimated to generate $1 million a year initially.
City leaders plan to use that money primarily to pay for upkeep of the Riverwalk, new riverfront parking and beautification projects.
The utility rate hike was approved unanimously. The meal tax was adopted 7-2, with Councilmen Jimmy Brooks and Tem Miles opposed.