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BATAVIA TO HIKE RATES FOR CITY WATER BY 10%

City residents will pay abut 10 percent more for water starting this summer as a result of unanimous City Council action Monday night.

The hike is much less than was recommended in the new city budget, and it falls short of meeting the expense of repairing the more than 70-year-old filtration plant.

Councilman Barry W. Bower said "basic maintenance has been neglected there for years."

The new rate will be $1.63 per 1,000 gallons, up from $1.48.

In a related matter, the Council awarded a $94,797 contract to Kohl Construction Inc. of Alden for renovating water plant filters.

The Council sidestepped two controversial issues. A resolution that would make Batavia one of the first communities to require a background check for prospective employees was withdrawn "for legal reasons." A resolution to conduct a feasibility study on developing a city-owned recycling center was tabled by an 8-1 vote. Councilman Kenneth F. Witt objected to the delay.

However, Council President George A. Spinnegan said the added time will allow discussions with the Town of Batavia on a joint effort. The Council will take up the issue again at its May 23 meeting.

The Council set May 9 for a public hearing on a special-use permit sought by Taco Bell for a drive-in restaurant in a shopping plaza on West Main Street.

The city will soon get a new aerial ladder truck to replace a 20-year-old vehicle. The Council accepted a $516,578 bid from Churchville Fire Equipment of Churchville.

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