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The Town of Aurora is negotiating to lower proposed new rates for about 200 homes that get water from East Aurora’s village lines.

“We are working on it behind the scenes and we have been for quite some time,” said Councilwoman Susan Friess at the town board meeting Monday evening. She was responding to concerns raised by Castle Hill Road resident Tom Cotton, who offered rate calculations and criticism.

“They’re just plain taking advantage of us,” he said.

Last week the village held a hearing on its plan. The new system, which has yet to be approved, would fold operation and maintenance costs into water costs in an effort to get users to pay a share of operations and maintenance that is proportional to water use.

Yet, Castle Hill-area residents already pay town “O&M” costs. And, said Cotton, the proposed village rate of about $6 for 1,000 gallons is well above the Erie County Water Authority’s charge of about $2 for 1,000 gallons.

Supervisor Jolene Jeffe urged patience, explaining that the town is trying for the best deal by researching the possibility of buying either from the village or directly from the water authority. “We are getting the final data that we need,” she said.

email: mkearns@buffnews.com