New water metering system promotes usage, not conservation

Dear editor,

Maybe I am not understanding the new water metering system in the CV Regional District.

Or maybe we have all been had.

But I just got my second tri-annual bill and I am not pleased.

I thought the purpose of these meters, which were installed a couple of years ago, but never actually used for billing until this year, was to conserve water.  Good idea. But I fail to understand how the base flat rate helps to this end.

This is how it goes. Instead of an annual flat rate, like in the old days, we are now supposed to pay for what we use, because we have a meter. Just like Hydro. But wait. There is a base flat rate of $88.68 for residential use of up to 60 cubic metres. (The actual consumption rate is $1.4780 per m3). So even if you don’t turn the tap on, you are still going to be billed for 60 m3.

So, I went over the base this period, and was charged for that actual use. I all get that. But I was quite surprised to see my mother’s bill. She lives two blocks away. Her usage was 9.37 m3 which at $1.4780 works out to $13.85. But no, she still has to pay $88.68, even though she did not come close to using the base.

Please explain to me how this system helps people to conserve water. If we had to have the meters installed, we should pay what goes through the meter. Not past the meter and on down the street. Otherwise I may as well tell my mother to let her taps run all day.

So, Regional Director C, please lower the base rate to something logical, like maybe 10 m3. Or eliminate it completely so we just pay per use. It is pretty simple.

James Derry

Regional District C resident

 

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