Opinions

Water Rate Hike Analysis

Dear Fullerton Observer,
As you pointed out in a previous issue, the City of Fullerton is planning to raise our water rates starting in July unless enough residences protest in writing or email before the hearing on June 4th, at 6:30 pm.  I believe the threshold is 60%.
Many people may have ignored the notice when it arrived this month as “junk mail”.
What the City’s notice failed to provide are the current rates in which to judge these rate hikes.  A one inch meter, located at most older Fullerton homes, currently cost $17.74 per month or $35.48 per billing cycle.  The current water usage formula is 3.213 cents for the first 7500 gallons 3.510 for the next 12,500 gallons and 3.799 for anything above that threshold.  You can get this from the City of Fullerton utility web site.
For all meters, the city is proposing to increase the rate each year for the next five years.  Unless protested, the rate for one inch meters will increase in July to 41.30 per month or 82.60 per billing cycle.   That is 132.81% increase per month!
If you take it out to July 2023 it will be $57.07 per month or $114.14 per billing cycle which is a 221.70% over today’s rates. In my opinion, this is a ridicules rate increase for something we don’t have control over.
I have a typical family home with 3-4 residences at any one time, I water my yard twice a week and during the summer my planters get an extra day of short watering.
I took my water usage for 2018 and applied the new water rate formulas to see how much more my water bills would rise.  I found 2019 was modest at $43.60 more for the year.  However in 2023 it went to $334.86 per year an increase of  12.28%
In my final analysis I added in the new water rates and the meter charges and found it was quite staggering.  In 2023 I would be paying over $800 more per year or a 27.44% increase!
Who knows what they plan to raise it after 2023???
Please inform your readers once again how to protest via email or a mailed written response.   We need to stop this now so that the city can rethink a more reasonable or more graduated approach to these rates.   Your readers can also call 714-736-3369 to get information on how to lodge a protest.
 Sincerely, David Soderquist, Fullerton

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