Attention EID Customers or Owners of Affected Property:
A Proposition 218 mailer has been sent to notify you of PROPOSED new rates for water, wastewater, and recycled water services, as required by Article XIII D, Section 6, of the California Constitution (Proposition 218).
Effect of Rate Adjustments on Average EID Bimonthly Bills
Estimate Proposed 2021 Rates
- For the AVERAGE WATER CUSTOMER, it means an increase of $8.63 per bill in 2021 and additional increases of $6.17 in 2022, $6.47 in 2023, $6.80 in 2024 and $7.15 in 2025.
- For the AVERAGE WATER AND WASTEWATER CUSTOMER, it’s an increase of $1.84 per bill in 2021 and additional increases of $6.17 in 2022, $7.82 in 2023, $8.15 in 2024, and $11.26 in 2025.
- For the AVERAGE WATER, WASTEWATER, AND RECYCLED WATER CUSTOMER, it’s an increase of $7.42 per bill in 2021 and additional increases of $7.30 in 2022, $9.00 in 2023, $9.40 in 2024, and $12.56 in 2025.
- For the AVERAGE WASTEWATER (SEWER) CUSTOMER, it means a DECREASE of $6.79 per bill in 2021, no increase in 2022, and increases of $1.35 in 2023, $1.35 in 2024, and $4.11 in 2025.
The El Dorado Irrigation District (EID/District) Board of Directors will consider these rates during a public hearing scheduled on Monday, April 27, 2020 at 9:00 a.m.
You may protest these proposed new rates as described at the bottom of this webpage.
PRIOR TO THE BOARD TAKING ANY ACTION YOU HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO BE HEARD AT THE FOLLOWING SCHEDULED OPEN HOUSE / PUBLIC WORKSHOPS.
- Wednesday, March 4, 2020 at 5:30 p.m.
Cameron Park Community Services District located at 2502 Country Club Drive in Cameron Park
- CANCELED DUE TO COVID-19 -- Monday, March 23 at 5:30 p.m.
El Dorado Irrigation District Headquarters located at 2890 Mosquito Road in Placerville
|COST OF SERVICES STUDY PRESENTED AT THE FEBRUARY 10, 2020 REGULAR BOARD MEETING|
As our water, sewer, and recycled water systems age, it is important to continue investing in replacement and upgrades of these assets in accordance with a long-term, balanced financing plan.
Based on the most recent board-approved financial plan, it has been determined that rate increases are necessary for EID’s water, wastewater, and recycled water service fees to enable the District to recover current and projected costs of operations and maintenance; fund capital infrastructure improvements vital for providing safe and reliable water service; maintain the operational and financial stability of the utilities; and avoid operational deficits and depletion of reserves.
The proposed rates detailed in this notice are designed to bring in the revenue needed to cover operating expenses and meet debt service obligations for vital capital projects.
We finance long-lived (50 to 100 years) projects much like homeowners who borrow money to finance their homes and then pay interest and principal on the loans. In 2020, EID plans a water bond issuance of approximately $60 million to rebuild or replace vital infrastructure (see below for more details) to provide safe and reliable drinking water. We issue low-interest bonds to cover our capital costs and pay the principal and interest from revenues. But we are held to stricter financing standards than most home mortgages. EID has a legal obligation to ensure that our net revenues exceed our debt service costs by 25 percent each year.
The major components of operating expenses are labor, services/material costs, and regulatory fees.
Labor: A variety of EID employees work every day to provide our customers with the best service possible, 24/7. Here are just a sampling of the highly qualified professionals who keep our customers in service. Operators run the water and wastewater treatment plants and water delivery and wastewater collection systems. Construction and maintenance crews replace and repair pipes and other infrastructure. Engineers design and oversee construction projects. Environmental analysts keep the district in compliance with a multitude of state and federal regulations. Information technology specialists construct and manage sophisticated electronic systems. Office staff answer your billing and service-related questions.
Non-labor expenses include (among others) water charges, regulatory fees, and the costs of chemicals, energy to run all facilities, and fuel for emergency generators.
FOLSOM LAKE INTAKE IMPROVEMENTS: $24M
The Folsom Lake Intake is a critical component to EID’s raw water supply. It is EID’s sole source of water from Folsom Lake, which makes up approximately one third of EID’s entire water supply. Given its age and deteriorated condition, past pump failures, ongoing safety issues, and the difficulty in obtaining repair parts for 1958 vintage booster pumps, EID has made replacement of the facility a high priority for the District.
FLUME REPLACEMENTS: $37M
Flumes and canals are a vital component of EID’s complex water conveyance system. They deliver approximately one-third of EID’s drinking water supply to its customers. The canal and its flumes run through steep and often hard-to-reach terrain in areas prone to landslide and fire, as well as tree and rock fall. Rebuilding dilapidated flumes in the District’s Project 184 delivery system will significantly reduce the risk of catastropic failure and will enhance water supply and power generation reliability.
The Apple Hill and Gold Hill agricultural areas, the City of Placerville, and communities west of Placerville to Cameron Park are served jointly by water from the El Dorado Canal and Sly Park’s Jenkinson Lake. The canal even contributes to supplying El Dorado Hills for a good portion of the year. New flumes and canals should have a lifespan of 50 years or more.
AGING PIPELINE REPLACEMENTS: $38M
Recent water line breaks—including the significant water main rupture in spring of 2019 that closed El Dorado Hills Boulevard temporarily—have highlighted the effects of aging District infrastructure and the lack of reinvestment for replacement. Our community relies on pipelines that are starting to fail at a more frequent rate, necessitating a more active replacement program. Not only does deferred investment increase the ultimate cost of replacement, equally—and perhaps more importantly—the deferral decreases the reliability of the service to our customers and increases the chance of creating public health and safety issues.
STORAGE REPLACEMENT/REHAB PROGRAM: $8.9M
This program consists of targeted replacement and rehabilitation of drinking water storage tanks and reservoirs within the distribution system. EID operates 36 steel storage tanks, ranging in age from eight to 58 years of age, most of which were constructed in the last 18 years as part of the District’s line and cover program. This program is to identify specific tanks and reservoirs to rehabilitate, replace, or upgrade to maintain service reliability throughout EID’s service area.
How do EID rates compare with other water and sewer utilities?
The following charts show how EID rates compare with other utilities in the region for typical residential water use and residential wastewater (sewer) services. The calculations in the charts include the base charge plus the commodity charge for the water used. PLEASE NOTE: All amounts are for bimonthly bills.
A Note About Wastewater Treatment
We’re often asked why sewer bills seem high. Quite simply, it’s costly but absolutely necessary to collect, treat, and safely reuse or dispose of wastewater.
Today’s extremely finely-tuned technology means that contaminants in treated wastewater are now measured in parts per billion (one-half teaspoon per Olympic-sized swimming pool). The resulting discharge regulations grow ever more stringent, which has required costly upgrades to wastewater treatment plants.
In the mostly rural Sierra foothills, the costs seem even higher. Cities like Sacramento and San Francisco are able to discharge into larger rivers or the ocean, and they receive dilution credits that help keep their regulatory costs lower.
That’s not possible in the foothills. EID has been required to treat its wastewater to “tertiary” (near drinking-water) standards for over two decades. And in many foothill counties, like El Dorado County, there are far fewer customers to share the costs.
How to protest the proposed new rates
Under Proposition 218, the owner of record for a parcel(s) that is subject to the proposed rate increases can submit a written protest against the proposed rate increases received by the District at or before the time set for the public hearing on April 27, 2020, at 9:00 a.m.
If a majority of affected property owners submit written protests, the proposed rate increases will not go into effect and the reconstruction work on the infrastructure will be impacted.
The written protest must identify the parcel(s) in which the party signing the protest has an interest. The best means of identifying the parcel(s) is by the Assessor’s Parcel Number (APN). If the party signing the protest is not shown on the last equalized assessment roll of El Dorado County as the owner of the parcel(s), the protest must contain or be accompanied by written evidence that such party is the owner of the parcel(s), unless the protest is by a tenant who pays the utility bills.
In rental situations where the tenant pays the utility bills, the property owner is responsible for supplying the tenant with this notice. Tenants who pay the utility bills can submit a written protest. One written protest per parcel will be counted.
Please mail or hand-deliver written protests (specifiying which rate increases are being protested) to: Clerk to the Board, El Dorado Irrigation District, 2890 Mosquito Road, Placerville, CA 95667.
Emailed, faxed, or electronic protests will not be accepted.