The sixth iteration of a biennial survey of water rates in California and Nevada features a newly expanded partnership for analyzing and publicly disseminating the results. The 2017 survey continues a series conducted since 2007 by the California-Nevada Section of the American Water Works Association with Raftelis Financial Consultants. The new alliance brings in the California Data Collaborative, which will post results for enhanced access by water utilities, researchers and other stakeholders.
“This three-way partnership will enhance the usefulness of the survey results and makes the analytical potential even more robust,” stated Tim Worley, Executive Director of CA-NV AWWA. “Raftelis has been an outstanding partner, with nationally recognized expertise in water rate structure analysis and design, and the Data Collaborative has a mission to bring important data such as the water rate survey to public accessibility,” Worley added.
The collaborating partners are asking all California and Nevada drinking water utilities to enter their rate information before the survey closing date of September 20. In addition to direct outreach to past survey participants, water agencies will be able to open the survey from the CA-NV AWWA website, or directly at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2017_water_rates.
Sudhir Pardiwala, Executive Vice President of Raftelis Financial Consultants emphasized the value of the water rate information generated by the biennial survey. “There are many reasons why rates will vary from one agency to another, so the basic financial information has to be put into the proper context. But it is extremely valuable for utilities to have that information at their fingertips, and the increased access will be a huge public service to other stakeholders as well.” He noted that data from prior surveys has been provided upon request to a number of academic researchers in recent years.
Patrick Atwater, a founder of the California Data Collaborative, expressed excitement about the ability to add water rate survey to the other data found on their website. “We started the Collaborative to make available information about water use and conservation, and water rates can have a huge impact on water conservation. So to work with an existing series conducted by these respected partners is a huge opportunity,” Atwater explained.For information on participating in the survey, utilities should contact Kevin Kostiuk, Senior Consultant, at Raftelis Financial Consultants, at [email protected] who will serve as project manager.