Posted on: June 27, 2017

CVWD changes sewer rate structure


Coachella Valley Water District’s (CVWD) Board of Directors today adopted a new sewer rate structure, which simplifies how the rates are calculated and reflects the demand that individual customers place on the sewer system.

The new structure, effective January 1, 2018, is based on industry standards and does not increase revenue received from sewer charges. CVWD has not changed sewer rates since 2010.

For residential customers, changes include elimination of different rates for people living in different cities within CVWD’s service area. As a result, homeowners in La Quinta, Thousand Palms and the Salton Sea communities will see a decrease on their sewer bills.

In addition, homeowners in Cathedral City, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage and Indian Wells will see an increase on their sewer bills of $1.44 per year, which is billed on annual property tax bills.

For businesses, changes include elimination of the Supplemental Sewer Cleaning Charge and tying rates to actual water use, which translates into demand on the sewer system.

Sewer rates are now based on the estimated amount of wastewater a customer discharges into the sewer system. This is calculated using a customer’s average water use over the prior three years and assumptions regarding the amount of water returned to the sewer system as wastewater. The three-year average water use calculation will be updated each year, thereby allowing for those who reduce their water use to lower their monthly sewer bills.

Under this new structure, about 40 percent of businesses will see decreases in their sewer bills (paid monthly with water bills) and about 60 percent of businesses will see increases in their sewer bills. Some of the increases will be significant.

CVWD staff members are available to answer questions about the new rate restructure and how it could affect your business. Please call Assistant Director of Engineering Carrie Oliphant at (760) 398-2661 ext. 2268 for more information or to schedule a meeting.

Revenues from sewer service charges are used to operate and maintain, repair, replace, and upgrade a sewer system that includes 1,129 miles of pipe that lead to five wastewater reclamation plants that treat an average 17 million gallons of wastewater every day.

For general information about rate changes, visit or call (760) 398-2651.

The Coachella Valley Water District is a public agency governed by a five-member board of directors. The district provides domestic and irrigation water, agricultural drainage, wastewater treatment and reclamation services, regional storm water protection, groundwater management and water conservation. It serves approximately 109,000 residential and business customers across 1,000 square miles, located primarily in Riverside County, but also in portions of Imperial and San Diego counties.

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