Rate Adoption Public Hearing
As utility costs throughout the industry continue to rise, Tempe staff is committed to managing those costs and staying efficient while upholding the city’s commitment to a sustainable future. Since city sales and property taxes do not fund water, wastewater or solid waste services, those costs must be recovered through residents’ monthly fees. Every two years, the Solid Waste and Water divisions work with a third party to conduct a joint rate adjustment study to help determine what adjustments are needed to recover the costs of these services.
These guiding principles helped shape the process:
1. Reliant on limited resources: water, land, resources, budget.
2. Responsibility to conserve.
3. Everyone pays their fair and responsible share.
4. Transparent and inclusive in our rate study process.
Rate studies are done every two years and are driven by policy directives and the above guiding principles. Based on the results of this process, changes may be made to the rate structure and rates, to better align costs to each customer class. As the rate study progresses, details of this process and recommended changes, if any, will be provided during public participation meetings and city council work sessions.
This rate study will include an examination of Tempe’s flood irrigation rates and how to manage the cost to provide this service. Flood irrigation has been a service the City has provided to various parts of Tempe since 1927. There are approximately 800 residential flood irrigation customers and 16 City parks that utilize this program. It’s important to the City to balance the cost of this service with the added value it provides to the community.
The Solid Waste team is responsible for several important city functions including waste and recycling collection, bulk trash and green organics collection, improving alley conditions and managing the city’s Green Organics program. All of these provide a better quality of life and long-term cost savings to residents.
Blue bin and green organics recycling are also crucial to reducing waste, which keeps material out of the landfill, helping the city reach its diversion goals.
The 2017 rate adjustment study is considering program changes that could include an incentive-based pricing program that would factor in container size. Another consideration is same-day collection.