Take a "Hike"

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A proposed hike on Thomasville Utilities may raise customer bills by seven percent monthly. The proposal passed its first hurdle at Monday's City Council meeting, and is up for approval at an April 11 session, but some TU customers don't see the need for a hike.

Alfred Thomas, a customer, says, "So something gone wrong, because why would they do this? And people are already crying about their utility bill, so why would you want to go up if people are already crying about it?"

Albert Williams, also a customer, says, "The more and more you raise it, that means the more and more money comes out of taxpayers that pay for that."

Others are understanding.

Christi Sheffield says, "As long as we continue to get good service and cutting edge utility services, I think it's appropriate."

And though the opinion among customers varies, the city insists that the hike in rates in not just fair, but also needed.

Steve Sykes, City Manager, says, "We'll demonstrate that number one, it's competitive; it's cheaper than everybody else. If you want to have a choice and leave, you'd pay more money."

The city also cites that money from the increase goes towards city services, such as financing the Police Department, and projects like the Mainstreet Program. Officials insist the change is needed, but know it's not popular.

Steve Sykes adds, "You ask somebody if they want their rates to go up, 'no,' but do we think it's fair? Yeah, we think it's fair; very reasonable."