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Salt Lake Residents Can Expect Water Rate Hikes

Salt Lake Residents Can Expect Water Rate Hikes


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Sammy Linebaugh reporting Salt Lake City's new water rate plan, for most residents, means an increase in their monthly bill. The change takes effect June 1st.

But, between now and then, city officials hope residents will re-assess their landscaping habits.

City officials don't like to use words like punish, or punitive, but the basic message for Salt Lake residents is to start conserving or expect to pay more for excess.

Stephanie Duer/Salt Lake City Water Cons. Coord. "WE WANT TO GET THE ATTENTION OF THOSE WHO AREN'T THINKING ABOUT HOW THEY USE WATER."

With that, most all Salt Lake City residents will see a bump in their water bill starting this summer.

How much depends, plain and simply, on consumption.

Stephanie Duer/Salt Lake City Water Cons. Coord. "THE AVERAGE PERSON WHO DOESN'T CHANGE THEIR BEHAVIOR WHO HAS AN AVERAGE LOT SIZE, WHICH IS ONE-FORTH OF AN ACRE AND A HOUSEHOLD OF FOUR PEOPLE WILL SEE A 10 TO 12 PERCENT INCREASE IN THEIR BILL ANNUALLY."

Those with larger families, more land, and more lawn could see rate hikes of 30 to 40 percent or higher if they don't take steps to conserve.

City officials say the new-tiered rate system has incentives for those who keep total water consumption below certain benchmarks.

They've set up a website which allows Salt Lake residents to calculate what their bill will be if they conserve...or if they continue with current habits.

Say last year's total bill was $250 dollars.

Starting in June that same consumption level will cost about 35 dollars more.

A $400 dollar annual water bill could jump as much as 130.00.

And a customer currently paying 700 dollars a year should expect an extra 300 dollars to be tacked on annually starting this summer.

Water managers say they're goal is to decrease the city's water consumption by ten percent across the board. It’s a squeeze now, but they say in the long run it will be a win-win situation for the city and for consumer.

Overall water consumption dropped 17 percent last year. Water managers would like to see more reduction this summer.

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