Actually, our current tiered rate structure is more equitable to that "elderly retired widow". Folks using less than 12,000 gallons every two months are charged in the first tier; i.e. charged less per gallon for essential water use than the higher tiers. The customers that use more water, beyond the 12,000 even 24,000 gallon mark, are charged more. If we were to go to a uniform rate as you have suggested, those folks using less and paying less would have to pay more and the folks using more would pay less. Think of it as a teeter-totter. Mathematically, it has been calculated that our uniform rate would be about $3.41. Our current third tier (over 24,000 gallons) is $5.98. The uniform rate would charge them $2.57 less per thousand gallon. If charged a uniform rate, the average bills for those using more water would go down. Our current rate for first tier is $2.64. That would mean our first tier low consumption users would pay .77 cents more per thousand. For the almost 90% of all of our customers that never use more than the first tier (more than 12,000 gallons every two months), that would mean their average bill would go up. In the end, CFPUA must generate a certain amount of revenue to run the system and pay for projects (and there are hundreds of millions of dollars of them.) The Board has retained the existing rate structure to provide essential water use at the lowest cost and to encourage conservation by charging more for high volume water users.
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