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Injunction granted on water rate
Rate to DUD set at $2.67 until resolution reached
thurman ronald
THURMAN
A ruling by Chancellor Ronald Thurman in Chancery Court Friday will require The City of Smithville to drop the $5.00 per 1,000 gallon water rate it recently chose to charge DeKalb Utility District (DUD) to $2.67 per thousand gallons.While city officials agreed not to disconnect DUD from the city water system until the feud between the utilities is resolved during the two-hour hearing in Cookeville, Thurman also granted a DUD motion for a temporary injunction prohibiting the city from charging the $5.00 rate.He found that the city violated its own statute by not giving DUD proper notice before raising the rate, and set the rate at $2.67 per 1,000 gallons, the price a water study conducted last year found to be the city's actual cost to produce water.The Chancellor’s ruling requires DUD to post an injunction bond of $75,000 to be held by the court until the case is settled. The bond will be posted as security to protect the city against loss in the event that it is proven later that the injunction was improperly granted.The chancellor opined that the City of Smithville violated Section 18-502 of it’s own city code requiring the city to give DUD a 30 days notice before a rate change. Thurman found that the city gave only a 16 day notice before the Jan. 1 rate change, and that a proper explanation of how a $5.00 rate was chosen would likely be necessary.

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