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We provide services vital to your quality of life

As Tacoma Public Utilities adjusts rates, we understand that decisions we make will impact you. We take that responsibility seriously.

It’s our job to provide services that are vital to your quality of life. To continue to provide reliable, high-quality service, Tacoma Power and Tacoma Water must invest in their systems.

Tacoma Power owns and operates an extensive system that requires constant maintenance and upgrades. The utility operates and maintains seven hydroelectric dams, nearly 2,300 miles of power lines and dozens of substations. Tacoma Water must maintain its 1,350 miles of pipe, 27,000 valves, 10,000 fire hydrants and the many other components of its system.

New rates for Tacoma Water
Starting Jan. 1, 2016, Tacoma Water residential rates increased.

If you live in Tacoma, your monthly water bill increased by about $1.41 per month, plus an additional $1.13 fee to cover the cost of fire hydrant service (for a total increase of $2.54). If you live outside of Tacoma, your bill will increase by about $2.11 a month.

Tacoma Power rates
On April 1, 2015, Tacoma Power residential rates increased for some customers and decreased for others, depending on where you live. (There are no Tacoma Power rate increases in 2016.)

If you live in Tacoma, unincorporated Pierce County, Federal Way, Milton or Roy, your monthly electric bill increased by about $2.20 per month in 2015.

If you live in Fife, your bill decreased by about 70 cents per month in 2015. If you live in Fircrest, Lakewood, Steilacoom or University Place, your bill decreased by about $3.75 per month.

Impact of franchise fees
The rate changes for different jurisdictions are related to franchise fees. Some jurisdictions charge Tacoma Power and Tacoma Water franchise fees to be their utility provider. A legal change requires TPU to now charge customers the same rate, no matter where they live.

View Environmental Services rates, set by the City of Tacoma. 

Why are rates changing?

Many factors drive the need to adjust rates, including keeping power and water systems safe and meeting required costs and regulations set by other organizations. Here are some of the reasons for rate changes this year: 

Tacoma Power
Tacoma Power buys more than half of its power from the Bonneville Power Administration. (The rest of the power comes from the utility’s seven dams.) BPA will increase rates by 7% in these two years, which drives up Tacoma Power’s costs.

And, to use the clean hydropower provided by our own seven dams, we have to meet a lot of federal licensing requirements. Some recent projects include two new hatcheries and a new fish collection facility at the Cushman Hydroelectric Project near Hoodsport.

Tacoma Water
Tacoma Water is in the final stages of completing the Green River Filtration Facility, estimated to cost $187 million. The facility will meet the federal requirement to treat our water supply for the parasite cryptosporidium. The filtration plant will be fully operational by May.


What You Can Do

Business customers
No matter what type of business you have, we have ways to reduce your electric use. We offer rebates and incentives on energy-saving lighting retrofits, HVAC system upgrades and compressed air efficiency projects, to name a few. We also offer free energy audits and energy bill profiles, as well as zero-interest loans. Learn more by checking out our energy efficiency programs or by calling (253) 502-8619.  

Residential customers
Our energy efficiency programs offer many ways to reduce your electric use, from instant rebates on compact fluorescent lights to rebates for insulating your home. Learn more by checking out our energy efficiency programs or by calling (253) 502-8377.