TAYLOR, Texas (KXAN) – The city of Taylor said upgrading its water infrastructure in anticipation of a larger population is partly driving up the cost of water and wastewater services. Some residents said bills are already too high and will only get higher with these new rates.

Effective October 1, the water usage rate is going up by 10% and wastewater by 8%. The base rates for both utilities are also increasing by a combined $6.11.

In sample water bills pictured in the presentation of the rate change, a $12.90 increase is shown after the change. Taylor’s Chief Financial Officer Jefferey Wood said it’s likely about $20 will be added to people’s monthly water bills, this estimate backed by a release from the city on water rates.

Wood said this increase in rates will help the city upgrade “outdated” water systems. He says this is being done ahead of developments coming to Taylor that will likely put more demand on its water infrastructure.

“Our system is older,” said Wood. “The older part of it is a lot larger than say, a lot of our neighboring communities that have seen rapid growth over the last 20 years. We haven’t seen that growth yet over time but we will and then we’ll have that new system in place like they have.”

Taylor residents on social media have been outspoken on their opposition to the rate increases. Stan Oliver started the Taylor Texas High Utility Rates Facebook page to find others facing water woes in the city.

Oliver said the rate increase will be a blow to his water bill which already has a high wastewater or “sewer” rate. He said he was unaware of the “analyzing period” some cities conduct to calculate a household’s wastewater fee. This notes water used during three consecutive fall/winter months finds the average of those months and sets the price until the next analyzing period.

Oliver said since March, he has been paying $165 dollars for sewer services. He estimated a “normal” fee should be around $60.

“It’s not fair, it’s not right, and just somebody needs to change something,” said Oliver.

When he heard the funds generated by this hike would be used mostly to upgrade pipes for future residents, Oliver said the city should focus its attention on fixing things for current residents like streets.

Oliver said the biggest change he would like to see from the city is to stop increasing water rates so heavily and make residents moving to the area more aware of its wastewater averaging period.

It is worth noting, the City of Taylor had several public meetings leading up to this latest rate increase and has its wastewater policies listed online. The last of which taking place at a city council meeting on September 8, according to the meeting agenda.

The city’s wastewater policies were last listed on September 19 in a notice on its website. Those months when a home’s wastewater averaging period is assessed was listed as well.