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Budget-based Water Rates
Budget-based Water Estimator
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Budget-based Water Rate Estimator

Results of the Prop. 218 Process for Water Rates
May 8, 2018


Educational Mailer - April 30, 2018     Spanish Version

Press Release Prop. 218 Notices Mailed

Prop. 218 Notice

2018 Water Rate Study

February 13, 2018 City Council Meeting PowerPoint for Water Rate Study and Proposed Water Rates  

November 28, 2017 
City Council Workshop PowerPoint

Press Release for City Council Water Rate Study Workshop

(909) 364-2800
A New Approach
Water conservation has become a permanent way of life in California!  The State of California is encouraging water suppliers to adopt budget-based water rates in place of the traditional tiered water rates.  Many California water agencies are implementing budget-based water rates that encourage Californians to use water efficiently, while ensuring fiscal stability for the water system.

The 3 Tiers 
Budget-based rates take into consideration water-efficiency targets set by the State of California for indoor and outdoor water use, lot size, and weather conditions.  Tier 1, the “indoor budget,” is based on the State’s determination that a water-efficient household uses 55 gallons per person, per day; and assumes four persons per household.  Tier 2, the “outdoor budget,” assumes that 1/3 of the property is landscaped.  This tier adjusts based on historical weather conditions.  Users are allocated more outdoor water during historically hot months, and less outdoor water during historically cooler months.  Tier 3 is high water use that exceeds the flexible Tier 2 allocation.   

The 3 Tiers Graphic

The 3 Tiers Described (ADA Compliant)

The basic premise of budget-based water rates is that everyone is expected to use water efficiently, and those who meet efficiency targets are rewarded with lower costs for water.  The lowest priced water is in the first two tiers, for indoor and outdoor use, while the rates in the third tier reflect inefficient use and higher-priced water.  The tier rates are consistent with the costs the City is charged for the water.  While the tiers are set to reflect efficient indoor and outdoor water use, the water system does not actually have a tool to track where the customer uses their water.  In fact, efficient water customers may be able to meet most of their water needs within the Tier 1 allocation.

An extensive process has been underway at various public meetings to review and discuss changing the structure of the City’s water rates to budget-based tiers, and to set the proposed amounts charged, based on system costs.  The next step required to implement new water rates is to inform the ratepayers of the proposal and follow the protest ballot process.  Proposition 218 (approved by voters in 1996) requires the City to give the ratepayers the opportunity to protest a change in rates.  Details about the proposed water rates and protest ballots are set to be mailed no later than March 23rd.  Both property owners, and renters, who receive a utility bill from the City, will receive a ballot.  A 45-day review period follows.  If the owner’s returned ballot, and the renter’s returned ballot are both protest votes, both votes will count as only one vote.  The rates are approved unless a majority returns protest ballots, which will be tabulated and results reported at the City Council Public Hearing on Tuesday, May 8th.   A successful protest vote requires 50%, plus one, of the total number of properties for which ballots were mailed.  

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Educational Mailer   FAQ's


Residents may contact the following departments for additional information: 

  • For utility billing questions, call Utility Billing Customer Service at (909) 364-2660.                          
    • For specific questions related to how these proposed budget-based water rates are structured, call the Public Works, Water Division at (909) 364-2800.