The residents of Delano got to speak their minds last night about frustrations over utility bills, and seemingly never-ending rate hikes. Delano residents have seen their rates go up 20 percent, and another 20 percent increase is on the way.
Those planned increases were for water treatment infrastructure improvements that cost the city 31 million dollars. Another 21 million dollar loan was taken out to fix the high levels of arsenic found in water wells, leaving residents to foot the bill.
The meeting was supposed to give residents a chance to ask questions, get some answers, and maybe find a solution, but some didn't feel any better after the meeting.
"They are like, 'this is already whats going to happen, we are just letting you vent. we hear what you say but this is what is going to happen,'" said resident Andrew Barregn.
"We are coming up with hard solutions to deal with it," said Delano City Council member Joe Aguirre. "Is it going to be well liked or well received? The answer is no. Is this something that needs to happen? Yes. If we educate the public and enlighten them, give them the keys to drive the solution, I think it would be better received."
Right now some residents are paying more than 80 dollars per month and with the next set of planned increases, those bills would spike to more than 100.
The city is planning to hire a consulting company to do more studies.