News

EBMUD considers rate increase

East Bay Municipal Utility District customers could see their water rates increase by a total of 12 percent over the next two years under a

proposal discussed by the water agency's board of directors today.

At a special budget and rates workshop, board members directed staff to study a plan to raise rates by 6 percent on July 1 this year and

another 6 percent on July 1 next year, according to EBMUD spokesman Charles Hardy.

However, Hardy said it is still early in the process. He said the next step would come on May 10, when agency general manager Alexander Coate

presents his proposed two-year budget.

If the board decides to continue pursuing a rate hike, there will be a public hearing and vote on June 14.

Hardy said EBMUD is considering a rate hike because its costs are

going up but its revenues are going down.

He said the water agency has been hit by rising gas prices, as it has a large fleet of trucks, as well by higher prices for chemicals that are

used to treat water.

In addition, EBMUD's 1.4 million customers in Alameda and Contra Costa counties are using less water than expected, Hardy said.

He said the water agency had projected that customers would use an average of 190 million gallons of water a day but they're only using 161

million gallons of water daily, which is resulting in lower revenues.

Hardy said that if water usage increases, EBMUD directors would consider imposing a smaller increase in water rates.

He said EBMUD has also taken other measures to balance its budget in recent years, such as not filling positions that open up when employees

retire or take other jobs.

Hardy said several hundred jobs are unfilled, which means that a smaller number of people are doing the same amount of work.

Comments

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Patricia
a resident of Alamo
on Apr 21, 2011 at 8:16 am

EBMUD wants to increase the water rates? What??? Here I was waiting for them to reduce the "drought" rates now that the drought is officially over.

EBMUD....give us a break! We saved water when you asked; increased our rates because we did so well and now want to reward us by increasing rates...yet again???? I think not.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Duffy
a resident of Danville
on Apr 21, 2011 at 8:22 am

Given the chopice of paying for water I don't use vs. paying for water I do use, I think I'll opt for the water I use! This is insane!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by psmacintosh
a resident of Danville
on Apr 21, 2011 at 10:51 am

There's something fishy in this water!
We use less water, so they want to charge more. Then they'll charge more, which will cause some of us to use even less....so they'll charge even more.
Their argument is that their costs are going up for gasoline for their trucks and chemicals for the water. If less water is being used, shouldn't there be less chemicals being used?
And, we're really supposed to believe that it's just the cost of gasoline that is causing this price increase? Not other factors like more employees, higher wages, more admin staff and costs, or less productive.
Seems there are some missing (operational/financial) facts from this presentation. It doesn't make sense as is.
Isn't this what "government" always tries to do--raise charges (prices, taxes), rather than reducing costs and size.....just bring in more money to sustain and grow the empire (at the expense of the real producers).


 +   Like this comment
Posted by make sense
a resident of Danville
on Apr 22, 2011 at 7:24 am

Seriously. If we use more water they'll consider raising rates less.
Everybody: turn your hose on and leave it on all day.
Rising gas prices have been all of the last 2 months (since Libya); now they're talking a rate increase (which will never be decreased). When gas prices went up to $4 a couple years back and then down, was there a corresponding decrease? NO!
Mark June 14 on your calendar and let's turn out to tell these jackals exactly how we feel at the public hearing. Make them open up the books so we can all see how they're ripping us off.
DO NOT LET THEM GET AWAY WITH THIS!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by howzat
a resident of Danville
on Apr 22, 2011 at 7:29 am

Hmm. I looked on their website. You can make $76K / year + benefits as a "paving raker" which is the guy who stands behind the asphalt truck filling in the holes left behind.
See:
Web Link
They just *might* want to consider lowering their obscene salaries? Wonder what the GM makes - $400K or so?
All is not right at EBMUD.
VOTE THE BUMS OUT!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Gaby
a resident of Danville
on Apr 25, 2011 at 10:20 am

It appears the public users of water accomplished the utilities request to cut back the past couple of years. So the utility raised our rates! I question the management's ability to reorganize as most businesses have done and join together in the "pain" the users are facing. It is easy to raise the rates but not to cut their spending. Go figure PG&E is raising their rates after the terrible disaster and the users once again pay for their incompetence. If utilities are allowed to keep raising the rates retired citizens will not be able to afford to live here anymore. Does anyone care?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Laura
a resident of another community
on May 5, 2011 at 7:10 am

Not only do they admit that this consideration is due, in part, to our efforts at conserving water, but they also admit that they have "many trucks"... that is the understatement of the year! Have you seen the trucks driving around? Not only here but up around Ione/Jackson area. Perhaps if they'd consider reducing their fleet of vehicles (some conservation on your part EBMUD please!!!), we would not be penalized for our attempts at conserving one of our natural resources.

This is just wrong, wasn't there just a huge rate increase in 2009? If there is still a public hearing on June 14, the public should attend in full force - spread the word. If you cannot attend, PLEASE consider writing a letter to:

EBMUD
MS 218
P.O. Box 24055
Oakland, CA 94623-1055

The protest letter can be as simple as follows:

Dear EBMUD:

Please consider this my written protest to the proposed FY 2012 & FY 2013 rate increases.

Sincerely,

Rate Payer's Name
Service Address
EBMUD Account Number



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