The East Bay Municipal Utility District this week approved a two-year, $2.25 billion budget that includes 4 percent water rate hikes this year and next.
EBMUD’s Board of Directors unanimously voted Tuesday to adopt the budget, which utility officials said will fund crucial improvements to the region’s water and wastewater systems.
Water and wastewater rates will increase 4 percent when the coming fiscal year begins July 1, and another 4 percent on July 1, 2022.
The average household using about 200 gallons of water per day will see their monthly bill increase by $2.53 on July 1, and another $2.66 on July 1, 2022, according to EBMUD.
The agency had originally forecasted rate increases of 5 percent, but backed off that total due in part to the economic fallout of the pandemic.
“We have carefully threaded the needle to meet the challenges facing our customers and our needs to invest in our critical infrastructure,” EBMUD Board President Doug Linney said.
The budget includes funding for roughly $800 million in capital infrastructure projects like replacing old pipelines and improving water and wastewater treatment plants to reduce their adverse effects on the climate.
EBMUD operates some 4,200 miles of pipeline, five reservoirs, six water treatment facilities, one wastewater treatment plant and has roughly 2,000 employees throughout the region.
“Our budget and rates are designed to ensure services remain resilient regardless of the situation we face, from the pandemic and Public Safety Power Shutoffs to earthquakes, droughts, fires and economic crises,” EBMUD General Manager Clifford Chan said. “Our customers count on us to fulfill our promise to them and respond to these challenges.”
EBMUD water customers can get more information about the agency’s current utility rates online.