When you get your new water bill over the next month or two, you will find it has been calculated using a blend of the old and new water rate structures. The new structure takes effect this week, along with the annual water-rate increase approved in the City’s 2019 budget.
The new structure includes both a fixed charge, for the cost of maintaining water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure, and a monthly drinking-water rate, based on how much you consume.
The fixed fees for water, wastewater and fire supply are based on the size of your home’s water meter. The stormwater fee is based on your property type, as determined by the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation. Stormwater was previously included in the sewer surcharge.
These are annual charges, divided into six equal payments that represent the two-month billing cycle. So they appear as a fixed charge on each bill.
The bill also has monthly drinking and waste water rates based on consumption. Consumption will be measured and billed according to four tiers:
- Tier 1 – up to 6 cubic metres
- Tier 2 – 7 to 25 cubic metres
- Tier 3 – 26 to 180 cubic metres
- Tier 4 – more than 180 cubic metres
Drinking and wastewater fees will be lowest for tier 1 and will increase with each tier of consumption.
For example, if you used 10 cubic metres in a month, the first six cubic metres will be calculated at the tier 1 rate, and the remaining four cubic metres will be calculated at the tier 2 rate.
Consumption rates are reset every 30 days. Since the bill is issued every two months, you will see the consumption breakdown for each of the two months, with the totals added up for one consumption charge.
Fixed fees and consumption rates are listed on ottawa.ca.
View the video on the new water rate structure
The new water-rate structure is revenue neutral for the City of Ottawa, meaning the rates are only high enough to recover associated costs. The fixed charge provides predictable and consistent funding to cover the costs of maintaining our water infrastructure. That helps prevent flooding, preserve our waterways and provide clean, safe and refreshing drinking water to every household.
Double check your new account number
The bill has been redesigned, and every user will have a new account number. Before you pay your bill electronically, be sure the new account number on your bill matches your payee number.
If you have preauthorized payments for water, your account number will be changed automatically.
Check out our videos and information on the new bill design, new account numbers and new water structure on ottawa.ca/wws.