Proposed Water, Sewer, Recycled Water and Rate Structure Changes
State law requires water and wastewater agencies to periodically conduct “cost-of-service” studies to ensure that the rates charged to customers continue to be fair and equitable. Proposition 218, amongst other mandates, requires that water agencies publicly show the nexus between the rates customers pay and the costs the water and wastewater systems pay. This ensures that customers pay only their fair share of the cost of providing service.
Long Beach Water’s Cost of Service and Rate Study Report includes the development of water, recycled water and sewer rates that are both fair, and consistent with Proposition 218 based on the most current industry information available. The report summarizes the key findings and results related to the proposed revisions of the water rate structure, and; water, recycled water and sewer rates and daily service charges; and customer impact analyses. Read the report here.
What does this mean for our customers?
The three-tier rate structure for residential customers is proposed to be revised with more water allocated for indoor uses, at more affordable rates. All customers will pay only their fair and equitable share. For all customers, the net impact of the proposed changes will vary based on meter size and actual usage.
The proposed tiers reflects the higher cost of different source water and helps to send a stronger water use efficiency pricing signal. Residential customers who use less water indoors will pay less. Higher levels of water usage demand more expensive sources of water supply and will be charged at higher rates.
LBWD will continue to participate in the City of Long Beach utility assistance programs for low-income senior and low-income disabled customers.
The proposed changes, overall, are anticipated to be revenue neutral to LBWD. As always, we take great pride in delivering our community both exceptional water and exceptional service while providing you with some of the most affordable water and sewer rates in the state.
Timeline of Actions
February: On February 16, 2017, the Long Beach Board of Water Commissioners adopted Resolution WD-1369, a Resolution fixing rates and charges for water and sewer services to all customers, subject to a public protest hearing and approval of the City Council. The Long Beach Water Department Cost of Service and Rate Study posted to lbwater.org.
March: Proposition 218 legal notice mailed to customers of record
April: Comment period
May: Proposition 218 public hearing
May: City Council consideration of adoption
July 1, 2017: New rates effective, pending all approvals