- All bills include the following:
- Base Rate - These charges pay the District’s fixed operations and maintenance costs, such as water main repairs, consulting services and wages. The charge is based on the size of the meter.
- Usage Charge - The usage charge portion of your bill is used for variable operations and maintenance costs, such as purchasing surface water, chemicals for water treatment and electricity. This portion of your bill is based on the amount of water that is registered passing through your water meter.
- Plant Assessment - The monies collected are for principal and interest payments on funds borrowed for past capital improvement projects and the building of the Treatment Plant.
One reason could be the size of water service line to your property. A typical residential service line is 3/4”, whereas, it is not uncommon for a resident to have a 1” service line. The smaller the service line, the smaller the charges. Other reasons could include water efficiency if on a metered rate: using less water results in a lower bill. Flat rate bills are based on the parcel size, so a smaller parcel would have a smaller charge.
The District does not have a reduced rate for senior citizens or low-income customers. Unlike AT&T and PG&E, who are private utilities regulated by the California Public Utilities Commission, North Yuba Water District is a publicly owned water utility (a form of local government call a “special district”) regulated by the State of California Department of Public Health and State Water Code laws. The District is further regulated by Proposition 218 passed by California voters in 1996. The District’s rates and charges are approved by our elected Board of Directors in compliance with state law. In particular, Proposition 218 prohibits the District from collecting from any customer more than the amount required to provide water service to that parcel. Because providing a reduced rate to certain age- or income-qualified ratepayers would require other ratepayers to subsidize the low “reduced rate” ratepayers, those paying the subsidy would be paying in excess of the cost of service to their parcel in violation of Prop 218.
No, water bills need to be mailed to utilize ratepayer dollars as efficiently as possible. The date of the water bill is determined by the date the water meters are read, which is at the same time each month. Because meter reading routes are determined geographically for efficiency to keep operating costs down, NYWD does not individualize billing cycles for customers. Also, when the water bills are grouped together, the District saves money in postage because of the bulk rate discount.
Government Code section 54348 allows a public agency to assess up to 10% late fees on delinquent water charges.
The best way to lower your water bill is to reduce your water use. The less you use, the less you pay.