San Diego County Water Authority Pass-Through Rate Increase Takes Effect for Rincon Water Customers
Press Release – Rincon Del Diablo Water – January 28, 2016
Escondido, CA – The water rate increase adopted by the San Diego County Water Authority (SDCWA) has gone into effect as of January 1, 2016. As a result, the pass-through rate increase to Rincon del Diablo Municipal Water District (Rincon Water) customers represents an overall 5.3% increase for potable water use. Based on the SDCWA’s increase, Rincon Water’s residential customers will now pay $5.34 for Tier 1 (1-5 units), $6.21 for Tier 2 (6-24 units), and $6.59 for Tier 3 (25 or more units) water use during each billing period (1 unit equals 1,000 gallons). Non-Residential customers will pay $5.81 for each unit of water used. These increases will begin appearing on customer bills starting with the statements to be delivered in early February.
The SDCWA-approved rate increase represents a revised rate structure necessary to insure adequate revenue to maintain infrastructure during mandatory drought reductions and associated reduced sales, to address other wholesaler costs relative to fixed and variable charges, as well as to factor in costs associated with the construction and operation of the new Carlsbad desalination plant.
“Most of the potable water used by Rincon Water customers comes to us through a complex system of aqueducts and pipelines that connect us to the Colorado River and northern California water supplies. The economy and our very existence depend on this precious imported water which travels hundreds of miles to our faucets. The costs associated with maintaining and improving this vast infrastructure have doubled since 2008, and are expected to continue increasing for years to come,” said David Drake, Rincon Water’s Board President.
Although Rincon Water has worked hard to absorb rate increases in the past, its 2015 Comprehensive Water Cost of Service and Rate Study revealed it can’t continue that practice. “Rincon Water and its staff have taken steps to cut operational costs and become as efficient as possible. Unfortunately, we can no longer absorb increased costs for water outside of the District’s control. The Board of Directors is proactively working to minimize impacts on customers while maintaining the lowest rates possible,” reported Greg Thomas, Rincon Water’s General Manager.
The best way to minimize the impact of the rate increase is to become as efficient as possible with water use. Rincon customers are encouraged to register for WaterSmart, a free tool which allows access to hourly water use data, customized water conservation opportunities, rebate availability, and leak notification. Please visit www.rinconwater.org for details. The new rate sheet, effective January 1, 2016 is also available on Rincon Water’s website at www.rinconwater.org/images/Rincon/Rates-2016Jan01.pdf.
Rincon del Diablo Municipal Water District is an independent, special district dedicated to providing potable and recycled water to approximately 30,000 people in a 42-square-mile area that includes Escondido, San Marcos, San Diego, and other surrounding unincorporated areas through nearly 8,000 connections. The public is invited to Board meetings, which take place at 6 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month at Rincon’s facilities located at 1920 North Iris Lane in Escondido.