Paso Robles seeking another water rate increase

November 1, 2015

water moneyStarting in a year, Paso Robles residents could be paying more for their water.

If a staff proposal is passed by the council and not contested, the average monthly water cost would rise $32.14 from a current cost of $36.90 to $69.04 in Jan. 2021. Without the increases, the city’s water operation fund will run out of money in fiscal year 2022-2023, according to a city staff report..

After five years of incremental increases that raised the per unit cost from $1.32 to $4.10 while canceling an 18 month flat fee to all users, the city is seeking again to raise rates.

The current water rate increase includes a fixed monthly charge to all users of $5 beginning in Jan. 2017 and increasing yearly to a rate of $10 in Jan. 2021

The increases are needed, officials say, because of reduced revenue due to lower water usage.Funds are needed to fund infrastructure repairs and the cost of the city’s Lake Nacimiento pipeline obligation.

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16 Comments

  1. Citizen says:

    The fixed monthly charge is unfair to poor people. Why should someone in an 500 square foot house pay the same monthly charge as someone in a 5000 square foot house or why should someone who uses 2 units of water pay the same monthly fee as someone who uses 30 units of water.

    I thought we had dismissed the fixed monthly charge when Frank Mecham wanted a $60 a month fixed charge for all. It’s unfair.

    The problem is what are you going to do when poor people can’t pay for their water? You can’t legally turn their water off. So, they will be “carried” by the other water users whose fees will rise.

    (1) 3 Total Votes - 2 up - 1 down
    • Paso_citizen says:

      You are correct – the poor and retired people on fixed incomes will be hurt. But, that
      fact was never considered. Read the added ‘info’ added to the council meeting on this rate increase. You will not see a single word concerning how those with low or fixed incomes are going to pay for this.

      Why? Because the ‘brilliant’ people who came up with this have absolutely no idea on what it means to have to live on a low or fixed income. They work for the City of Paso Robles and therefore are making extremely good salaries (with great benefits) – get better than cost-of-living increases each year and know that any water rate increase they
      may have will be covered by their non-fixed incomes.

      And, lastly the ones that can not afford this (and many other increased costs) will be
      ‘subsidized’ by those who can. All part of the great American way of life.

      (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
  2. Paso_citizen says:

    No big surprise! Use less and you will pay more. Why is it that the only option being
    considered is to continually raise rates?

    We have been paying for the water plant and for the Nacimiento pipeline since 2004.
    Water rates have more than tripled since then. When will it ever stop? And I already know the answer – never.

    Hopefully, there will be an uprising against this and the citizens of Paso Robles will
    block this increase.

    Somehow, someway this continual increase has to stopped.

    (9) 9 Total Votes - 9 up - 0 down
  3. Jorge Estrada says:

    Smart growth come with a cost that makes everyone a tenant. How do you sugar coat communism?

    (4) 10 Total Votes - 7 up - 3 down
    • kettle says:

      Lol, communism, is someone time tripping back to 1959?

      Red Scare! Run! “A Red Scare is the promotion of fear of a potential rise of communism or radical leftism, used by anti-leftist proponents.”

      This:”the promotion of fear”

      (-5) 7 Total Votes - 1 up - 6 down
      • Jorge Estrada says:

        kettle, That might be so but the truth is what we now need to deal with. Today you will pay a hefty price for land that has water, you will drill a very expensive well and install a meter per the new ordinance. Your taxes will threaten to ability to keep the property and the just permission to build a home will cost double of what it cost to build that home in 1959. I suggest that if fear is not important then your finances definitely are.

        (6) 8 Total Votes - 7 up - 1 down
        • Jorge Estrada says:

          Ok, I’m a little dyslectic or something, but you get my drift.

          (1) 3 Total Votes - 2 up - 1 down
  4. shelworth says:

    Oh No! $70 in 2021! Try Golden State in Los Osos, $129 just to have the meter, water was extra.

    (6) 6 Total Votes - 6 up - 0 down
    • hijinks says:

      Golden state are private greedy capitalist rip-off artists, but the city of Paso isn’t supposed to be any of the above. If you buy water from a private for-profit rip-off outfit, you should expect to get hosed. Buying from a city should be different since we “own” the city and should be treated with greater consideration and kindness.

      (3) 5 Total Votes - 4 up - 1 down
  5. pasoobserver says:

    Mr. Holly, You are so right about conserving H2O. Then get hosed by the City Administrators for using less.So, people of Paso Robles will pay more for using less as usually.If, I may opine, there isn’t a water shortage in PR. All new hotels and new homes are being approved by our City officials. Just another fiasco in the makings.

    (26) 28 Total Votes - 27 up - 1 down
  6. whatdouno says:

    Perhaps they should cut some staff and learn to budget like all other businesses when income is down.

    (26) 28 Total Votes - 27 up - 1 down
  7. Pelican1 says:

    tSimply put….this city is OUT OF CONTROL

    (23) 25 Total Votes - 24 up - 1 down
  8. NorthCountyGuy says:

    So were is all of the Lake Nacimiento water that the suckers voted for????

    (16) 16 Total Votes - 16 up - 0 down
  9. Mr. Holly says:

    Conserve water, let your landscape die and watch all of the new homes and hotels get built just so you can have your water rates increased. Maybe somebody ought to think about taking some of that new hotel bed tax and put it towards the increase in these water bills? Or everyone can pay the increase water bill let the new hotels get built and bring in more bed tax for the city to spend on themselves. Looks like the citizens of Paso Robles are supporting the tourism push.

    (35) 39 Total Votes - 37 up - 2 down
    • obispan says:

      Same is in SLO. Water rates were tripled to subsidize development at $100,000/house so that housing would be more “affordable”. The houses sell at market rate, the same as without the subsidy, which is pocketed by the developers who in turn make very modest investments in political campaigns.

      (6) 6 Total Votes - 6 up - 0 down
    • hijinks says:

      Sorry to see Paso going the way of SLO. This water pricing scheme, with the annually-increasing fixed monthly charges rather than pricing water itself to cover all system expenses, is the regressive new normal. It transfers disproportionate costs to those who use the least, and is highly unfair. But we’re seeing it with PG&E bills, water bills, who knows where it will end. As for the “cost” of running the water system, most of it is debt payments, not salaries. The goons who signed up the people of Paso for all that debt should be tarred and feathered, but fat chance. Unfortunately, once the debt is incurred, there are two choices: repay it, or default. Nice people repay. Maybe we need to try being not nice for a change? What would happen if Paso defaulted? Might be worth finding out. Hopefully the citizens will take things into their hands, as they did once before, and block this huge rate increase.

      (8) 8 Total Votes - 8 up - 0 down

Comments are closed.