July 09, 2002 11:00 pm

ELGIN — Water usage may go down in the fall of the year, but for Elgin water users, the cost of their water is going up.

The city council on Tuesday approved a monthly $2.67 increase, to become effective Aug. 1.

Since Elgin water users are billed every other month, residents will see the first increase on their Oct. 1 bill — a $5.34 jump.

The added income will cover the cost of a new city water tank completed this summer, city officials said.

Elgin residents currently pay $18.58 per month for up to 2,000 cubic feet of water. (There are approximately 7 1/2 gallons in each cubic foot of water.) Additionally, they pay $15.10 per month for sewer services.

The council agreed to keep sewer rates the same for the coming year.

The newly calculated rates will mean that the every-other-month city and water bills for basic service will be $72.70.

Residents can pay monthly but will be billed every other month.

In other business Tuesday, the city councilors unanimously expressed their support for Norm and Peggy Hays' interest in investigating the possibility of purchasing four acres of land in the Weyerhaeuser addition near the new city industrial park.

The Hays hope to expand their Stampede Inn. They had planned to add a second floor to the inn, but federal handicapped access regulations would mean adding an elevator to the building, said city administrator Joe Garlitz. An elevator, the Hays have found, would cost about the same as the entire building now.

"So he's looking at other options," Garlitz said. One option might be to move the entire Stampede Inn to a new location and expand the building by adding on.

The Hays agreed to keep the council informed as they study their expansion options.

"There's lots of details to work out," Garlitz added.