WATER RATES

RESTORE RESIDENTIAL WATER RATES

On Monday 6/18/18 Mayor Taylor and City Council voted 7 – 4 to increase water rates for homeowners and to reduce rates for multi-family dwellings and commercial users.

 

Jack voted against the proposed Water Rate changes because:

  • No new revenue is generated by this rate change. It simply shifts $2 million in cost from the commercial side to single-family homeowners, renters of single-family homes, owners and renters of duplexes and owners of condos with individual water meters,
  • Home (rented and owned) and condo (with separate meters)  rates will increase 10 – 22% depending on the amount of water used. Meanwhile, the multi-family residential rate, which includes the many luxury apartment buildings recently built and owned by corporations, will decrease by 44%.
  • Home (rented and owned) and condo rates are “tiered” -- meaning the more water used, the more expensive per CCF it will be. The multi-family and commercial rates are “flat” -- so no matter how much water is used, the first CCF costs the same as the tenth or the hundredth.

What does this mean for Ann Arbor homeowners? See the chart below that shows the changes in the water rate structure. Note that a CCF = 100 Cubic Feet = 748 gallons. You can find your water usage at secure.a2gov.orgWaterConsumption.

The tiered vs. flat rates result in a stark difference in water bills in the higher usage rates. An example for comparison: The water rate charge for using 25 CCF:

  • Homeowner bill is $89.21
  • Multi-family bill is $53.25

Likely you were unaware of these proposed rate changes because the City made little effort to publicize them. Jack, on the other hand, posted an alert in late March on Nextdoor.com with a link to references. Jack followed up with a June 16 post on Nextdoor which included more references and announced the Public Hearing and Vote scheduled for the 6/18/18 Council Meeting.

Jack Eaton not only opposes this water rate change and hike, Jack believes that City government should be forthcoming with proposed changes that will affect residents; he would have had staff include a notice of this proposal in all Water Utility bills in the months prior to Council action. Jack believes in transparent governance.