Home > City Council, News > Appeals court overturns decision on Guthrie’s water and sewer rate increases

Appeals court overturns decision on Guthrie’s water and sewer rate increases

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Last week the Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals overturned a Logan County judge’s decision on an initiative petition when it comes to raising water and sewer rates by the City of Guthrie.

Guthrie City HallThe case has been sent back to District Judge Phillip Corley for further consideration, including possibly putting the petition on the ballot for voters to decide.

City of Guthrie attorney Randel Shadid will seek his recommendation to the city council on making an appeal to the Oklahoma Supreme Court.

The petition, filed by former city Councilwoman Patty Hazlewood and resident Karen Schandorf on Sept. 7, 2008, proposed the city should not be allowed to raise water and sewer rates, but instead be submitted to the legal voters of the city for their approval or rejection at the next regular general election, or at a special election.

Guthrie News Page was in the courtroom for the non-jury trial in 2013 when Corley ruled the petition would cause an undue burden on the City and Guthrie Public Works Authority and that it would destroy the city’s ability to engage in the business of a utility.

The only city in the state that allows a vote for rate increases is Norman.

Hazlewood became displeased when the City implemented a CMOM fee on residents’ utility bill to repair and replace infrastructure.

Hazlewood told The Oklahoman, “The city was raising them willy-nilly every few months, and it was awful. Every time they needed money, they raised the rates, and that’s not right.”

Related storyJudge denies petition; rules in favor for City of Guthrie
Related story: Day two of the City of Guthrie trial; continued
Related story: City of Guthrie and former councilwoman begin trial

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Categories: City Council, News
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