Water Bills Expected To Increase 6 Percent – Board Recommends Increase In Rates – Cost of Water Meters and Connections Rise

Water Bills Expected To Increase 6 Percent – Board Recommends Increase In Rates – Cost of Water Meters and Connections Rise

Booker At Meeting

(Best Syndication) A representative from the County of San Bernardino Special District’s Department came to the May 9th Zone L water board meeting to present a proposed 6% increase in the water rates. In a previous meeting Budget / Fiscal Division Manager Randy Booker proposed the 6 percent increase and now he was back Wednesday for a presentation.

Randy said that he “built” the budget which is now going through the review process of the county administrative officer. Although the County Board of Supervisors will vote on the proposed increase, the Water Board can submit their recommendation. The vote was 3 to one 1 in favor of the increase.

Randy went over some of the finances including a loan with the California Infrastructure Bank which we are paying interest on. The rate payer is paying a $220,000 “debt service payment” on that loan every year. Of course there are other things in the budget, but Booker made specific mention of that payment.

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Booker said that we plan the budgets in order to cover unplanned emergencies. The rate payer pays a little more every year than the cost of water delivery so that money is set aside for those emergencies. Optimal, the rate is about 110 percent of the operating expenses. He said that this fund will cover that 110 percent easily.

Randy said that there are capital reserves in Zone L. He said that the capital expansion reserve is $4.8 million, the Capital Replacement Reserve is $2.5 million and the Operation Fund Balance Reserve is $3.7 million.

There will likely be rate increases in both the price of the water and the base monthly charge. The cost of a water meter will also be going up. The fiscal year goes from July 1st through June 30th. Everyone on the Water Board recommended the six percent rate increase except Al Morrissette. Morrissette said that since he was not at the last meeting he decided to vote nay (no).

Here is a chart of the rate increase:

Existing and Proposed Bi-monthly Water Rates  FY 06-08   hcf = hundred cubic feet
  Fiscal Year 06/07 Existing Rates Fiscal Year 07/08 Proposed Rates
0-15 hcf $1.71 $1.81
15-80 hcf $1.90 $2.01
81 hct or more $1.96 $2.08

 

Existing and Proposed Monthly Regular Service Charges (Base Fee)
Meter Size (inches) Existing (dollars) Proposed (dollars)
5/8 and 3/4 12.27 13.01
1 17.55 18.6
1 1/2 30.28 32.10
2 44.10 46.75
3 75.30 79.82
4 115.87 122.82
6 213.73 226.55
7 315.68 334.62

 

Existing and Proposed Connection Fee Charges  2.5 percent increase
Existing Rate Proposed Rate
$7.692.26 $7.882.98

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By Dan Wilson
Best Syndication Writer

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