Rising Sun considers discount for paying water bills early
— Town water and sewer customers may soon receive a discount for paying their bills early.
Rising Sun is one of the last remaining towns in Cecil County to still offer a discount for paying property taxes early and the mayor and commissioners are now considering introducing a resolution that would give
RISING SUN Traffic stop yields heroin, three arrests
— Police arrestted three people on Thursday after a traffic stop found more than 60 bags of heroin and a large amount of cash, according to the North East Police Department.
Jamie L. Lewis, 26, Timothy G. McCrone, 46, both of North East, and Archie W. Newby, 35, of Elkton, have all been charged with possession of heroin and possession of paraphernalia following a traffic stop at around 2 p.m. on Thursday, said NEPD Cpl. Stephen Yates, who conducted the drug investigation that led to the traffic stop.
NEPD Cpl. Michael Hickey made the traffic stop, during which police discovered 63 bags of heroin in five bundles and a large amount of cash inside the car, Yates said. Hypodermic needles were also found.
the town’s 1,000 water and sewer customers a discount for paying their bill early as well.
Currently customers have 20 days from receipt of the monthly bill to pay the full amount. In July, Rising Sun started charging 10 percent interest on unpaid balances. Calvin Bonenberger, town administrator, said this was a move to cut the number of people who are habitually months behind.
“We’ve had some people go six months or more without paying the bill,” Bonenberger said Thursday, adding that those customers pay the oldest balance to keep services in place.
Rising Sun’s minimum usage for water and sewer is only 1,000 gallons, Bonenberger said and those households on average receive a monthly bill around $33. Since the town switched to monthly billing in 2012, he said many customers find it easier to pay the amount owed. However, the switch from quarterly to monthly billing also means more man hours from town hall in order to make collections.
“We can spend 100 man hours each month,” he said, adding that was the effort taken when billing was quarterly.
To cut costs, but also to help customers, town officials are trying to determine how much of a break they can offer for making the payment within 10 days.
“Let’s say you do a 1 percent or 2 percent discount or a $5 flat rate, whichever is higher,” Bonenberger said. “This is an economic recovery effort for all players.”
He said commercial customers would also get a discount, but at a different rate.
“The town could take the position that we need every dollar we get,” he added. “But that’s not good for all people involved. We need to make it cost-effective to live in Rising Sun.”
The resolution could be introduced as soon as the Nov. 8 town meeting, although the board voted Tuesday night to begin that meeting a half hour earlier because that’s also the date of the general election. The agenda for that meeting is also expected to be short.