Water Rates Process
Determining Rates & Charges
Water rates cover the cost of providing a reliable supply of high-quality drinking water to the communities of Fremont, Newark and Union City. As a public agency, ACWD cannot take in funds beyond the costs of providing its service. The District periodically conducts an analysis to ensure water rates accurately reflect the cost of water service. The District also uses outside expert consultants to ensure that its rates are properly determined. Following a series of public workshops, the District notifies customers and the public about any proposed rate adjustments through various means:
- A formal notice of any proposed rate adjustments will be mailed to all addresses within the District’s service boundaries. The formal notice contains the details of a public hearing where the revisions are proposed to be adopted by the Board after a formal 45 day public input period. View the current formal notice of proposed rate adjustments.
- Postings to the District’s website and social media sites
- Email notifications to customers who have subscribed to receive board meeting notices
- Press Releases
- Printed advertisements in local newspapers.
The District continuously looks for and implements ways to minimize costs. These include delaying capital improvement projects when feasible, installing Advanced Metering Infrastructure to improve metering accuracy and provide long-term cost reductions and operational savings, and using the District’s diverse water supplies to maximize use of lowest-cost water. Cost controls have helped keep the District’s water rates consistently in the lower half of 30 Bay Area water agencies. You can view a chart that illustrates ACWD’s current median water bill in comparison to other Bay Area water agencies.
The District also continuously evaluates new revenue sources such as grant funds, and has secured about $20 million in grant funds and reimbursements, primarily for mandated fishery projects in Alameda Creek.
To view the current rates and fees, visit the District's Water Rates page.
2021 Water Rates Process
December 9th, 2021 Board Meeting
At this Board Meeting, District staff presented proposed charges and water rates based on the discussions that occurred over the series of financial workshops during 2021, including a review of proposed water-related rates and charges, a Cost of Service Study, and a review of Water Shortage Emergency Stage Rates. The Board authorized staff to provide formal notice to the community of proposed rate increases. View the formal rate increase notice.
January 20th, 2022 Informational Meeting
The District will hold an informational meeting to discuss proposed rate changes. You may attend that meeting virtually via Zoom by using this link. The meeting passcode is 569864. Additional meeting information is available at the District's Agenda Center. Meeting notices are posted at least three days before meetings.
February 10th, 2022 Board Meeting
At this meeting, the Board will vote on adoption of the rate proposal. You may attend that meeting virtually via Zoom by using this link. The meeting ID is 833 5985 6504 and the passcode is 438204. Additional meeting information is available at the District's Agenda Center. Meeting notices are posted at least three days before meetings.
Formal Protest Process
If you wish to protest the adoption of the proposed water rates, you may do so by filling out the District's Water Rate Protest Form. You may also attend the February 10th Board meeting virtually and register your protest then.
In 2021, the District conducted a series of Financial Workshops.
As a separate item, this workshop also discussed the transition from at-large to zone-based elections, which is included in the presentation materials along with the financial presentation. View the presentation from the October 28 workshop.
For information on ACWD's rate history, visit the Previous Water Rates Processes page.
If you should have any questions or comments about ACWD's rates and charges, please contact us by calling 510.668.4200 or emailing our rates team.