MOUNT PLEASANT — A 5 percent increase in water rates effective on bills issued after July 1 is proposed as part of the new Waterworks budget.

The increase equates to $2.55 per month for the typical residential customer using 5,000 gallons.

The rate hike is needed for a number of reasons such as system maintenance and improvements, implementation of new labor and cost-saving technology as well as employee education and training, the Waterworks web site states.

A public hearing on the proposed, new budget will be held at 5:30 p.m. Monday at the Waterworks Operations Center at 1619 Rifle Range Road.