Fulton City Council Tackles Problem

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FULTON - The Fulton City Council met Tuesday to hear possible solutions which would prevent the city from losing more money on unpaid utilities.

The city is losing an estimated $170,000 on utilities annually.

The city's first plan was to have the city's landlords partially responsible for tenants who defaulted on their payments. The idea was scrapped after it received public backlash from landlords. One landlord even threatened to sell her assets in the city if the plan was implemented.

Fulton currently does not have a plan but Fulton Mayor LeRoy Benton said a utility deposit hike is inevitable.

Fulton landlords said the city should hold those who use the utilities responsible for picking up the tab.

Fulton landlord Linda Gubera said the city should get more information from possible tenants.

More information means more protection for the city according to Gubera.

"[If] they know who they work for they can garnish wages, if they know their bank account number they can do an automatic withdrawal," Gubera said.

Gubera said tenants should be responsible for the utilities they use, and landlords already have a lot to worry about.

Currently, residents put down less than $300 in deposits for the city to provide utilities.

However one city employee said a proposal to raise that deposit cost could go before the city council next month.