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Tim Howard
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THE VENICE CITY COUNCIL ON TUESDAY SUSPENDED PLANNED RATE INCREASES OF WATER AND SEWER CUSTOMERS PENDING A STUDY.  THE INCREASES WERE TO GO INTO EFFECT IN THE FALL.  A CONSULTANT WILL BE HIRED TO DO A COST OF SERVICE STUDY TO BE COMPLETED BY THE END OF THE YEAR.  LEN BRAMBLE, THE CITY UTILITIES DIRECTOR, TOLD COUNCIL MEMBERS HE DID NOT KNOW THE DIFFERENCE IN COSTS TO BUSINESSES AS COMPARED TO CONDOMINIUM OR SINGLE FAMILY HOME OWNERS WHICH PROMPTED THE FREEZE AND STUDY.  PUBLISHED REPORTS SAY CONDO OWNERS ORGANIZED AND COMPLAINED TO OFFICIALS AFTER LAST YEAR’S INCREASE IN WHICH THEY WERE CHARGED FOR EQUIPMENT THEY DID NOT HAVE AND WERE CHARGED FEES THAT THEY TERMED INEQUITABLE.  ACCORDING TO THE CITY’S WEBSITE, THEY SERVE ABOUT 22,000 CUSTOMERS.