Sound Off: Water bills unfair

The following is what our readers sounded off about this week.

On water bills

In Downers Grove … we are assessed on gravel driveways the same as asphalt. A gravel driveway does absorb the water. … Also a wooden deck with spaces – the spaces allow the water to go through. … Many of us have actually been to the village, have met with the village individuals, and pretty much I've been told "it is what it is." But if they're saying the water needs to drain into the ground, gravel driveways, decks, the water does absorb back into the ground. … When I was there … I was told, it's just a shift coming off of our tax bill to our water bill. We all need to be aware it is not a shift because if it's on our taxes, we can use it as a deduction on our annual income tax. If it is on our water bill, there is no tax write off or tax benefit.

Parking problems

Regarding the parking problems in downtown La Grange it seems to have been forgotten that a lot of people park there to go to the movies. And that ties up the spaces for at least two hours. Maybe the theater owners should be responsible for the lion's share of whatever cost is involved for improving or increasing the parking situation.

Noisy neighborhood dogs

As a pet owner, I am appalled at my neighbors who allow their dogs to continually disturb the peace by their incessant barking. I am not talking about the dog that barks at an occasional animal or passerby, but the dogs who are let out in their yards most of the day and constantly bark as early as 6 in the morning and continue until late in the evening. … Yelling at your dog to 'stop barking' actually reinforces that behavior. Do some research and find ways to eliminate this behavior. Ultimately, if you cannot control your animals barking, keep them in the house where you will be the only one who has to listen to them and allow your neighbors some peace and quiet.

High taxes

Recently my neighbors sold their home and moved away. I have been so saddened by this because they did not want to leave. They lived in Wheaton for over 40 years … but when they retired they could no longer afford the high property taxes in Wheaton. Their own children had long ago grown and left the area. I am saddened and concerned that through the high taxes of Wheaton such upstanding people who have loved their home and town should have paid taxes for so many years, funding the over-inflated education of so many other people’s children, for example, and be forced to leave. How many people does this happen to? I have other neighbors who are considering leaving as well, and for similar reasons. This is a great place to live, but perhaps Wheaton would consider being more frugal with our money and lowering taxes – and consider the needs of the taxpayers some more.

Charge for parking

Why do we need overnight street parking in Brookfield when most every house has a garage or driveway? If the village charged a reasonable fee to park on the street overnight, say $10 or $20 per month, most people would probably put their cars away at night, while allowing an equitable option for those who don't have a garage. This would also reduce crime because fewer cars would be on the street for thieves to break into. I'm sure the village wouldn't be angry with the extra revenue, and with less cluttered streets, property values might actually increase.    

Fashion options

For the person who wanted to know about women's clothes, size 16. There's a lovely shop in La Grange called Mary Ann's. It's at 21 Calendar Court. They have sizes ranging from a petite, small, to 3X or larger. There's plenty of size 16 and very, very nice fashion.

Too many fees

I have lived in Downers Grove for 46 years and am now a senior citizen living on a fixed income. … Back in 2010 they added a new water meter and charged a fee [on the water bill] for the meter, which at the time for me was $8.25. It is now $10.50. Somebody please tell me why a meter goes up in fees. At the end of 2012, a stormwater fee was added – another $16.80. When we first moved here, my water bill was usually between $20 to $30. The last one I got was for $76.20 and that's just for me. What does a family of four have to pay? And now I read they're talking about raising water prices again and will another stormwater fee be added? I was hoping to live in my house for my remaining years but with everything going up so much I'm not so sure.

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