Wetter up

The city hasn’t published the new water rates yet, though William Crum of the Oklahoman has been keeping tabs on them, and the new proposal as a whole sounds plausible to me:

Significant provisions include:

  • A pricing strategy that produces 5 percent more revenue each year, with an overall reduction of 4.3 percent in water use after five years.
  • A three-year plan to increase the charge to hook up a new home — known as the “impact fee” — from $100 to $1,000, in $300 increments.
  • A strategy to make sure surrounding communities pay equitable rates for water bought from Oklahoma City and that they share in system improvement costs.

Crum reported yesterday:

The average customer, who uses 7,000 gallons of water per month, will pay $19.11, up 55 cents; a customer using 15,000 gallons would pay $43.00, up $3.25.

This indicates the implementation of usage tiers: the more you use, the higher the price per thousand-gallon unit, which is consistent with the city’s ongoing water-saving program.

Most of the time, I’m billed for 3,000 gallons a month; sometimes it’s just 2,000. I figure I’m probably using 2,700 or so. I expect the new rates, which will undoubtedly include tweaking of service, sewer and refuse fees, will go into effect in October.


  1. Georganna Hancock (@GLHancock) »

    10 June 2014 · 7:09 pm

    Just got my bill for 3 HCF for 2 months (half what I used to draw). Cost of water – only $10.92. Fee for getting water, $51.18. All the rest of the $105.64 bill concerns being able to have the water run down the drain.

    1 HCF = 748 gallons, so I use a little over a thousand gallons a month.

    Not sure who has the better deal, but I know the sewers are killing us! Plus we have the highest electricity rates (and rising as are water rates) and among the highest gasoline rates in the continental U.S. They call it a tax for the sunshine in San Diego.

  2. CGHill »

    10 June 2014 · 7:36 pm

    Well, since we’re sharing:

    Current monthly bill (received Saturday) is $57.87. This includes $10.97 just for being in the system, $7.95 ($2.65 x 3) for three 1000-gallon units, $10.71 sewer charge, $5.53 “drainage fee” — this is to cover the cost of keeping stormwater out of the sewage system, or something like that — $19.06 to pick up my rubbish (two big bins once a week, plus four cubic yards of bulk waste once a month), and $3.65 to subsidize the local ambulance service. (This latter supposedly gets me a free ride should it be necessary.)

    I’m guessing that I can expect this to rise to about $62 next year.

    Electric rates are smallish around here: the base rate on the standard tariff is a mere 5.73 cents/kwh. (However, the fuel adjustment is currently running about 3 cents, so the effective rate is closer to 9.) In the summer, any usage over 1400 kwh/month draws a 1.07-cent surcharge. By sheerest coincidence, my worst summer usage is around 1350-1390 kwh. I expect these to rise about 20 percent over the next ten years, as power-plant “improvements” are phased in. I have gas heat, and it makes for a symmetrical budget: in the summer, lots of electricity and very little gas (just the water heater); in the winter, not so much electricity and lots of gas. To the extent possible, I keep the thermostat sitting at 74°. (There were four days this winter with temperatures in the single digits, and I’ve lived to see the all-time high in this town tied, hence the qualification.)

    I paid $3.599 for Shell V-Power E10 last Saturday. Regular was 30 cents less.

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