Analysis of water rates collected in the OWRS format.
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Open Water Rate Analysis

Analysis of water rates collected in the OWRS format.

See the analysis

The original analysis was used as input to the 2017 Rate Survey conducted by the California-Nevada Section of the American Water Works Association. The rate survey provides a more polished product but the raw charts are available here in this repository.

Get the Data

The summary data provides streamlined access to water rate data in CSV format. The summary table is derived from the OWRS data maintained by the CaDC combined with publicly available data sources from the California SWRCB, DWR and the United States Census.

The fields in the data are as follows:

Field Name Definition
utility_name Name of the water supplier
pwsid Public Water System ID
effective_date Date the rate structure came into effect
bill_frequency Billing frequency
bill_unit Unit of measure for which customers are billed
usage_ccf Amount of water use used for calculating the customer bill. Where possible this value adjusts to local water use context and is derived from the GPCD provided in the SWRCB reporting. When this is not possible a default of 15 CCF is used. This value is given in CCF but usage is converted to the bill_unit specified above before the bill is calculated
avg_household_size Average household size within the agency as derived from the American Community Survey 2016 5-Year
et_amount Monthly evapotranspiration in July 2017 derived as a weighted average of CIMIS station readings near to the agency
bill_type Type of commodity billing used, e.g. Uniform, Tiered (inclining tiers) or Budget (inclining tiers with tier width based on a household water budget)
service_charge Fixed service charge, in dollars. Where the charge is based on meter size a size of 3/4" is assumed
commodity_charge Variable commodity charge for water consumption, in dollars
bill Total bill charged to a customer under the assumptions used in the analysis (usage, meter size, household size, etc). In some cases the bill may not equal a sum of the service and commodity charges. This would be the case when other charges are present (e.g. pressure/elevation charge, readiness-to-serve charge, etc)
tier_starts The unit (defined above) where each tier starts. For example if tier_starts = 0 5 10 then the rate structure has 3 tiers, the first applies to units 0-4 the second rate applies to units 5-9, and the third rate applies to units 10+
tier_prices Prices charged to each tier as detailed above.
median_income_category The ACS income category in which the median household in the district resides
approximate_median_income Approximate median income calculated as the mid-point of the median_income_category