In April 2013, Tacoma Water bills increased about $2 per month for customers who live inside Tacoma and $7 for customers who live outside Tacoma.
A recent state Supreme Court decision requires Tacoma Water to pass on the cost of maintaining and operating fire hydrants directly to customers, rather than the city they live in. In our case, that decision applies to people who live outside of Tacoma city limits.
Two dollars of the $7 increase is needed to make up for several years of fire hydrant operations and maintenance costs that were provided but not paid for. When those costs are recovered in 2018, the charge will go away. Three dollars of the $7 increase covers ongoing service of fire hydrants. The remaining $2 is the rate increase that all customers pay to cover the escalating cost of providing high-quality, reliable water service.
While we know any increase has an effect on people, we are pleased to say that Tacoma Water rates are still among the lowest in the area.
Monthly Water Bill Comparison
Compare our rates with those of other major utilities in our region, as of April 1, 2013.
What Goes into Water Rates
Tacoma Water's residential rates vary inside and outside the Tacoma city limits. In each case, however, there is a monthly customer service charge based on the size of the water meter, plus a charge for the amount of water used.
Water use is measured in units of cubic feet (ccf). One unit is about 748 gallons of water. The cost per unit of water is determined by the time of year, amount used and where you live.
Tacoma Water charges a higher rate for water use above five units from June 1 through September 30. This difference reflects the higher cost of providing water during the summer and is also designed to encourage water conservation. Learn how you can save water.
Water Rates Ordinance
View our Rates Ordinance for detailed information about water regulations and rates for residential, commercial, industrial, parks, irrigation and fire protection customers. This document, Water - Regulations and Rates, is Chapter 12.10 of the Tacoma Municipal Code.
For more information about your utility bill, call (253) 502-8600.