Between the three-year-long drought and the dismal state of the economy, it’s no surprise that many governmental agencies have looked toward raising taxes and service rates. We’ve seen it across California: water providers have increased their water rates as their own supplies are cut by 10% or more. As demand for water is growing faster than the available supply of water, water rates will go up. City officials in California have also begun to call on their fellow residents to cut their water consumption by 10 to 20% to address the shortfall
This week in Texas, Oklahoma and California, city council members voted on measures to increase the cost of using water in their respective towns. In Little Elm, Texas, the average household’s water bill will rise by three percent, per the passage of a new ordinance, according to the Courier-Gazette. In Oklahoma, a Haines City ordinance was passed which allows for water rates to rise immediately by at least seven percent. It is expected that the rates will go even higher over the coming years.
Around Los Angeles County, the Las Virgenes Municipal Water District warns customers that if the district uses more than its allotted water levels, “substantial penalties” could be passed on to users. The LVWD will be receiving about 4,600 fewer acre-feet of water this year from the Metropolitan Water District than it received in 2008 and so has instituted a new billing program. The LVMWD is a member agency of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD). After 8 weeks under the new billing program, LVMWD stated that “30 percent [of customers] have exceeded their budgeted use in small to moderate amounts and some 15 percent have had substantial penalties added to their bills for excess use, in a few cases amounting to some individual bills carrying thousands of dollars in additional charges.”Whether or not you live in any of these towns, it is more than likely that if not now then at some point in the near future you will be faced with the need for conservation.
Whether or not your water rates have risen, there are many ways you can cut down on water use on a typical day. One great way is by monitoring your landscaping water use, which can be easily accomplished with the Cyber-Rain smart sprinkler controller. Cyber-Rain can save up to 40% on water bills and typically pays for itself within a year!