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Just Sayin': Water rates penalize large households

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I received a $417 water bill for July. It was more than double the $199 bill for June. It was a summer bill and I have a sprinkler system, so I understood it would be higher, but the $417 figure floored me. I called my utility, New York American Water. I spoke with customer representatives and had my water meter checked. My bill was correct.

New York American Water has a four-tier system created to encourage conservation. The more water that is used, the higher the price. In the first tier, a home that uses 3,000 gallons a month is charged 46 cents per 100 gallons; that’s one person using about 100 gallons a day. At tier four, the price for every 100 gallons above 15,000 is about $1.17! The rates are approved by the state Public Service Commission.

I believe I am punished for having a six-member family. If we each use 100 gallons a day, we pay tier-four prices. I believe it would be more fair if the utility set its basic rate based on the number of occupants in a house.

This can’t just be me. Elected officials approved this system of regulation; they should fix it. In the end, I paid my water bill. What choice did I have?

Suzanne St. John,


Thanks to strangers who helped husband

I want to thank the wonderful people who came to my assistance on Sept. 3 when my 73-year-old husband, Anthony, fainted and hit his head on the pavement in the parking lot at Big Lots in Holbrook. He was helping me load a package into our car when he told me he did not feel well and then collapsed.

Five or so strangers rushed over. Someone called 911. I’m especially grateful to an angel who took a blanket from her car to put under his head, and to the Holbrook ambulance workers who arrived quickly and took him to Stony Brook University Hospital.

It is people like these who make this world a better place. I promise to pay it forward. My husband is doing well.

Carolyn Manganello,