From the Dublin San Ramon Services District:
Based on the results of a water rate study, Dublin San Ramon Services District (DSRSD) is proposing changes to water rates and service charges that will increase the average residential bill by approximately $1.35 per month.
The proposed changes provide the revenue needed to cover the cost of providing water service and accomplish revenue stability goals set by the Board of Directors, including making cash flow more predictable, meeting the minimum requirements for water-related debt payments with ratepayer revenue, budgeting to replace recycled water assets in the future, and continuing to motivate efficient water use. A detailed explanation of the proposal, including a bill estimator, is available on the District’s website at http://www.dsrsd.com/your_water_services/proposedrates.html.
Customers will see the biggest change in the two fixed charges that are the same on every bill: the Fixed Water Service Charge and the Temporary Infrastructure Charge. Approximately 96 percent of the costs to operate the water system (not including the cost of water) do not vary with the volume of water used, yet fixed charges currently generate only about 20 percent of water rate revenue (13 percent from the Fixed Water Service Charge, 7 percent from the Temporary Infrastructure Charge). Under the proposed restructuring, the Temporary Infrastructure Charge will be suspended and reduced to zero and the Fixed Water Service Charge will increase to generate 25 percent of water rate revenue. To offset the increase, potable water customers will pay less for each water unit in each tier.
“Increasing the part of revenue that is predictable throughout the year stabilizes our rates and improves our credit rating,” says District Board President Dawn Benson, “and this reduces the cost of borrowing. Also, customers can always reduce their bills by using water efficiently.”
DSRSD will mail a notice describing the maximum potential rate changes to all water customers on February 22. Customers can attend DSRSD Board meetings on February 19, March 5, March 19, or April 2 to ask questions or make comments.
The notice contains instructions for submitting valid written protests in accordance with Proposition 218. Protests submitted by mail, fax, or email must be received by 5:00 p.m. on April 16, 2013. Hand-delivered protests must be received before the close of the public hearing on April 16. Customers also may make statements or submit written protests at the public hearing. All of the meetings begin at 6:00 p.m. in the DSRSD Boardroom at 7051 Dublin Blvd., Dublin.
The Board will consider adopting the proposal on April 16, after the public hearing. Rates would change no earlier than July 1, 2013.