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Water bills are expected to rise next month with a surcharge. How are you coping? Let us know: newstips@action-alameda-news.com

Water Utility Approves Massive Rate Increase

The East Bay Municipal Utility District Board of Directors has approved a massive rate increase. (Google Street View)

The East Bay Municipal Utility District Board of Directors has approved a massive rate increase. (Google Street View)

Yesterday, the East Bay Municipal District (EBMUD) Board of Directors approved a massive 20 percent rate increase over two years.

The new rates go into effect July 1, 2013.

A typical single family home could see their monthly water bill go up 20 percent over the two year budget period approved by the board. Wastewater treatment rates will rise too – 18 percent over two years.

The utility’s total budget for water and wastewater treatment for Fiscal Year 2014 is $713.5 million, comprised of $585.1 million for the water system and $128.4 million for wastewater treatment. For Fiscal year 2015, the board approved a total budget of $739.6 million, $595.1 million for water and $144.4 million for wastewater treatment.

The District says that the rate increases are needed to preserve the utility’s $14 billion investment in its infrastructure.

The increases might have been prevented if the utility had received written protest letters from a majority of impacted property owners and tenants.

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