Unmetered Landscape Irrigation
1) Rate Structure Changes
Your water bill is determined based on what it costs to serve water to your home or business. Due to state requirements, the changing water use trends driven by the recent drought, and our fiscal responsibility, we need to reassess our rate structure.
- We worked with an independent consultant to ensure proper allocation of costs among customers and develop the Final Administrative Record for Rate Structure Analysis (PDF). Our rate structure changes align water rates with the cost of your water service, nothing more.
- These structural changes only affect how rates and charges are allocated among customers; they do not result in additional funds for the District overall.
- With the rate structure changes, some customers’ bills will go down, while others will go up depending on their service.
NOTABLE CHANGES UNDER THE RATE STRUCTURE
The untreated water rates have been standardized to increase ease of understanding and administration.
Annual Charge – The previous annual charge has been replaced with three separate rate components: annual service charge, usage charge, and demand charge. These rate components will be standard for all untreated water customers.
1. Service Charge – The service charge covers our 24/7 customer service and the billing costs—it is based on eight months of service, from April through November, during irrigation season.
2. Usage Charge – The usage charge covers the cost of purchasing source water, delivery, and conservation programs. Unmetered landscape irrigation customers do not have recorded water usage, so the usage charge is based on estimated usage during April through November using an outdoor water budget formula assessed per 0.05 acre.
3. Demand Charge – The demand charge represents the costs of delivering water to customers under peak demand conditions. Unmetered landscape irrigation customers do not have recorded water usage so the demand charge is based on estimated peak month usage during April through November using an outdoor water budget formula assessed per 0.05 acre.
2) Annual Rate Adjustment
Water rates pay for the transport and delivery of safe, high-quality, and reliable water to all District customers. Based on our annual review conducted with the rate structure evaluation, our Board approved a rate adjustment 2019 Rate Review Public Hearing and Adoption (PDF) to generate a 6% revenue increase for 2019 to maintain your water service.
These adjustments are necessary to:
- Meet the increasing costs of operating and maintaining the system as well as treating and delivering water
- Continue repairing and replacing aging pipes and other facilities
- Account for new state mandates
- Fund employee salaries and benefits
- Rebuild financial reserves for the next drought
Putting It All Together: 2018 Rates Compared to 2019 Rates
Under the previous rates, an untreated water customer with 0.10 acre of irrigable land paid about $220.96 per year for their water service. With both the rate structure changes and rate adjustment, the annual cost would change to $366.48. This would result in an increase of $145.52 per annual billing cycle.