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Chicago’s water rate hike causes ripples through suburbs

When Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced plans to nearly double the rate Chicago charges its neighbors for Lake Michigan water, many suburbs began looking for cheaper alternatives — and others are making moves to profit from the dispute.

From Oak Park to Homewood, more than 100 communities depend on Chicago’s control of the Lake Michigan spigot, and some say they feel trapped because the cost to tap other sources is too great. But suburbs like Wilmette and Evanston, which operate their own filtration plants, are hoping to siphon away some of Chicago’s disgruntled customers.

Officials in Wilmette this week approved a nearly $150,000 study with Des Plaines and Glenview to investigate increasing the village’s water plant capacity and the pipeline improvements that would be needed to deliver water to other towns. Glenview, which buys water from Wilmette, is considering cashing in by extending its pipes to sell water to cities like Des Plaines.

Read more: The Chicago Tribune.

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