Proposed Revenue Increases and Rate Structure Changes (Novato Service Area)

(Posted May 26, 2020) The District proposes increasing revenue and revising the water rate structure for fiscal year 2020-2021. If approved at the public hearing on June 16, 2020, the new rates and rate structure changes will go into effect on July 1, 2020.

For more details about the public hearing, the proposed rates and rates structure changes see the links to the right.

New Low-Income Rate Assistance Program Helps Low-and Fixed-Income Customers

The key reasons that a 6% revenue increase is needed are described below

  • Increased investment in water facilities. The District must increase investments in facility upgrades and replacements from $3 million to $6 million per year. This will help address the need to properly maintain the District’s $137 million system of pipelines, pumps, reservoirs, treatment plants, valves, hydrants, laboratory, monitoring systems, and more.
  • Rising costs to purchase imported water. The District imports 75% of its water from Sonoma County Water Agency. The cost of purchasing imported water accounts for 30% of the budget and the water supplier has forecast that the costs will continue to increase by 6% every year.
  • Impact of inflation on all costs. The proposed revenue increase is designed to meet all the costs of providing water service. This includes purchasing, treating, and delivering safe, high-quality, reliable water to your home or business without fail, every day and around the clock.

Reasons for The Proposed Rate Structure Changes

The District regularly reviews its water rate structure to ensure that each class of customer continues to pay their fair and proportional share of costs. The cost for serving each class of customers varies over time because of changes in customer water use, state regulations, service costs, and other factors.

Millions of Dollars Saved

The District raises revenue only when necessary—first seeking to stretch its existing resources. As a result, cost control is a daily focus of North Marin Water District, which is one reason our rates are the lowest in Marin County and at the median for water agencies around the Bay Area region. Here are some of the ways we have kept rates down.

  • We decreased electrical costs by installing clean solar energy systems.
  • We obtained over $10 million in grants for recycled water expansion.
  • We saved $18 million by sharing the cost of a large aqueduct project with other public agencies.
  • We reduced future retirement benefit costs for new employees.
  • The new recycled water system was implemented without additional staffing. Recycled water costs our customers less than potable water.
  • We’ve reduced the number of full-time employees from 58 a decade ago to 54 today, saving $675,000 per year.

More Information About Proposed Rate Changes

Got Questions? We Are Here to Help

If you have questions, we encourage you to contact our customer service staff at 415-897-4133 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.