Rate Adjustment FAQs

Because TMWA is a not-for-profit community-owned water provider, it is important that our revenues cover the cost of providing water service to our customers. Although water use has gone down, over 90 percent of our costs remain fixed regardless of the amount of water used.
How can customers get more information and provide feedback?

There will be an extensive public process allowing our customers ample opportunity to provide feedback. This will include eight public meetings; including customer open houses, Board of Directors meetings and the Standing Advisory Committee meetings. Customers are encouraged to attend any of these meetings. All concerns and feedback will be presented to the TMWA Board of Directors.

The increase would be effective with customers’ May 2017 water bill.

Yes, under the current proposal all customer classes, including residential, commercial and irrigation, would receive the same percentage of increase.

All western water utilities share a common issue in which the result of conservation is lower revenue; however operational costs remain nearly the same regardless of the amount of water used.

TMWA always encourages responsible water use. It is our responsibility to plan and maintain a sound water supply for the future. Rather than looking at rates vs. conservation, we need to focus on the value of responsible water use efforts – being wise with our precious resource helps maintain a healthy river ecosystem, ensures adequate supply for ourselves and future generations and delays the need for costly infrastructure improvements.

The answer is no. Some people mistakenly believe that when our customers use less water through conservation, the water saved is used for growth. That is not what happens. Unused water is retained for our drought reserves or is released to benefit river system health. Reselling of conserved water to serve new houses or businesses does not occur. For more information, see our Topic Paper here.

If TMWA’s revenues are not in line with the cost of service, a rate adjustment proposal is presented to the Standing Advisory Committee and the Board of Directors.  Based on the utility’s financial performance and cost studies, the Board then determines the timing and size of a potential rate adjustment, just as any business would do.