O’Fallon Considers Utility Bill Round-Up Donation Program

The O’Fallon City Council is considering a voluntary program that would allow residents to donate to a designated charity by rounding their utility bills–water, sewer and trash–up to the next dollar.

Residents would be able to choose whether or not to participate in the program.

City Administrator Bonnie Therrien spoke to the city council during its March 26 work session. Therrien noted that Wentzville is the latest in a number of communities offering the program to help those in need. In Wentzville, the money raised through the utility bill program is given to the city’s senior center.

The council could decide each year where the money would go, Therrien said, or choose to divide the money among several charities.

Patty Duncan, administrator of the city’s senior center,  suggested the Meals on Wheels program as the initial beneficiary.

O’Fallon’s Meals on Wheels program serves 151 residents. Because funds for the program have been decreasing, it is possible that the program might have to change from serving hot meals daily to delivering frozen meals once a week.

Duncan said that meant losing the opportunity to check daily on homebound seniors.

The board agreed to consider the program but would not confirm definitely that Meals on Wheels would be the beneficiary. Councilman Jeff Schwentker said, “I don’t have a problem with Meals on Wheels, but the council needs to discuss where the money should go.”