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Water Services

2020 Water and Sewer Rate Restructure

Water Rates by volume infographic, text description follows

The left section of the image shows irrigation system, plants, and a bar chart showing increasing rates and prices for water usage based on the tiered rate structure that went into effect on January 1, 2020.

The right section of the image shows a chart with Water Rates by Volume.

Metro Water Services bills in CCF. 1 CCF = 100 cubic feet or 748 gallons

  • Water usage of 0-2 CCF, customers are not charged.
  • Water usage of 3-6 CCF, customers are charged $3.50.
  • Water usage of 7-10 CCF, customers are charged $4.20.
  • Water usage of 11 or more CCF, customers are charged $5.25.

69% of customers use less than 6 CCF per month.

The volumetric rate for water is determined by how much water you use. This simple rate calculator (Excel spreadsheet template inside zip file) will help you determine how increased water use will affect your bill.

Residential Customers receive Seasonal Sewer Billing / Sprinkler Adjustments

Sewer charges are calculated based on the amount of water used under most circumstances. An exception is made for residential customers during the months of April through November, when water is used to sprinkle lawns or wash cars. Since water used for these purposes does not go into the sewer, sewer service charges for residential bills are automatically adjusted during these months to reflect a “sprinkler credit.” The winter quarter average (January, February, and March) plus 30 percent will be the maximum sewer charges billed.

A Large Percentage of Water Is Used for Irrigation

The average American family uses 320 gallons of water per day, about 30 percent of which is devoted to outdoor uses. More than half of that outdoor water is used for watering lawns and gardens. Nationwide, landscape irrigation is estimated to account for nearly one-third of all residential water use, totaling nearly 9 billion gallons per day. (Source: WaterSense: Outdoor Water Use in the United States)

Additional resources

About the new water and sewer rate structure

The new water and sewer rate structure follows an in-depth cost of service study based on industry standards and best practices and are designed to…

  • Be Equitable – you pay for what it costs us to provide you service without subsidizing other customers
  • Be Affordable – water needed for life is still provided at a low rate
  • Encourage Wise Water Use – excessive water use is charged at a higher rate to encourage customers to conserve water

The structure includes multi-year rate increases from 2020-2024 to secure funding for critical water and sewer projects. Starting in 2025, customers will see a small increase in water and sewer rates each year to ensure future funding.

The new rate structure went into effect January 1, 2020 upon approval by Metro Council.

Rate Increases for 2020

For both water service and sewer service, customers’ bills include a fixed charge, a volumetric rate, and an Infrastructure Replacement fee.

Fixed Meter Charges

Fixed meter charges for both water and sewer service are determined by the size of your water meter. Fixed meter charges cover costs for readiness to serve and are the same for both residential and commercial customers.

Water and Sewer Rates by Meter Size
Meter Size Water Sewer
5/8-inch $5.09 $8.14
3/4-inch $12.12 $36.00
1-inch $15.28 $46.58
1.5-inch $26.85 $90.67
2-inch $37.91 $127.38
3-inch $60.58 $158.59
4-inch $137.72 $449.98
6-inch $171.93 $536.44
8 and 10-inch $223.72 $686.89

Volumetric (or usage) Rate

The volumetric rate for both water and sewer service is determined by how much water you use.  Volumetric rates are different for residential and commercial customers.

Residential Water and Sewer Rates by Volume
Residential Volumetric Rate Water Sewer
0-2 CCF $0 $0
3-6 CCF $3.50 $5.85
7-10 CCF $4.20 $5.85
11+ CCF $5.25 $5.85

1 CCF = 100 Cubic Feet or 748 gallons.

Commercial Water and Sewer Rates by Volume
Commercial Volumetric Rate Water Sewer
All usage $2.75 $5.85

Infrastructure Replacement Fees

The Water and Sewer Infrastructure Replacement fees create dedicated funding for replacing old infrastructure.

Water Infrastructure Replacement fee – will equal 10% of your water service charges (fixed charge plus usage).

Sewer Infrastructure Replacement fee – will equal 10% of your sewer service charges (fixed charge plus usage).

Resources for Residential Customers

Resources for Commercial Customers

Commercial Customer Open House

Commercial customers are invited to come talk with a customer service representative about how your bill will be affected by the proposed rate increases.

Water Services Customer Service Building
1700 3rd Avenue North

  • Saturday, November 23
    10:00 a.m. - 12 p.m.
  • Monday, December 9
    2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, December 17
    5:00 p.m. - 7 p.m.

Resources for Developers

Metro Water Services Cost of Service Study

The proposed new water and sewer rates are based on an in-depth Cost of Service Study completed by Raftelis Financial Consultants, Inc. for Metro Water Services. The goals and objectives of the Cost of Service Study, as identified by Metro Water Services, included developing a thorough understanding of the following items:

  • The costs of providing water and sewer service to different customer classes
  • Alignment of revenues under the existing rates with the costs of providing service
  • Options for implementing tiered residential rates and the impacts of doing so
  • Maintaining affordability of service for customers
  • Multi-year water and sewer rate projections that support long-term financial needs.

Download the complete Water and Sewer Financial Planning and Cost of Service Study.