The Banner Elk Town Council Voted October 12 to raise rates on system development fees related to water and sewer connections.

The Avery Journal reports last month a fee report from McGill Engineering Associates indicated current fees were justifiable, and presented a maximum allowable rate the town could charge - $8.84 for water and $11.35 for sewer.

Town Manager Rick Owen recommended the council consider a fee schedule at 66 percent of the maximum - a rate of $5.83 for water and $7.49 for sewer, saying the town didn't want to price itself out of the market. Owen sited the combined $15.88 rate in Boone and $12.50 rate in Blowing Rock.

Council members voted 3-2 for the 66% of maximum rate, with an option to potentially raise the rate in the future.

Council decided the town will not hold Halloween events due to the lingering effects and presence of COVID-19.