On Tuesday, Dec. 6, at 6 p.m., a majority protest public hearing will be held to consider proposed increases for the city’s water and sewer rates. Information about the proposed increases was sent to Carlsbad water and wastewater customers, businesses and property owners in October.
The city works hard to keep rates as affordable as possible. Most of the proposed increases are outside of the city’s control, such as the increased cost of buying imported water. The city also needs to make sure it has the money needed to provide reliable water and sewer service, which includes keeping up with maintenance of pipelines and other infrastructure.
What is a majority protest public hearing?
At a majority protest public hearing, if it is determined that a majority of property owners has submitted a formal protest, the proposed fee change must be rejected. This is a requirement of Proposition 218, which was passed by California voters in 1996 to limit methods by which local governments can create or increase taxes, fees and charges without taxpayer consent.
How can I submit a formal protest?
In order for a protest to be considered a formal protest, it must be in writing and include the street address and signature of the property owner. Formal protest letters can be mailed to:
City of Carlsbad
1635 Faraday Ave.
Carlsbad, CA 92008
Although oral comments at the public hearing will not qualify as formal protests unless accompanied by a written protest, the city welcomes input from the community during the public hearing.
I'm using less water but my bill keeps going up. Why is that?
The cost of buying imported water keeps increasing, so even though residents and businesses are using less water, the total cost could still be higher than in previous years. In addition, there are fixed costs associated with providing water and maintaining the water system. With fewer units of water being sold, that fixed cost per unit goes up. (One unit of water is 748 gallons.)
Can the city help me save water?
Yes! Conservation tips and rebate information can be found on the city’s website at www.carlsbadca.gov/water. Carlsbad Municipal Water District customers can also sign up for a free water audit by calling 760-438-2722.