CLEARWATER - For the fifth consecutive year, Tampa Bay Water’s board of directors approved the agency’s fiscal year budget with no wholesale rate increase.
The approved 2016 budget reduces agency expenditures by more than $2.4 million and maintains a wholesale drinking water rate of $2.56 per 1,000 gallons of high-quality drinking water.
“Tampa Bay Water’s board is committed to providing clean, safe water at an affordable price,” said Matt Jordan, general manager for Tampa Bay Water. “We developed a budget that maintains the current rate by finding efficiencies and implementing rate-saving measures throughout the organization.”
Highlights of the fiscal year 2016 budget include:
• $2.4 million reduction in overall expenditures
• Four new staff members and two co-op positions, saving the agency $228,000 by bringing work in-house versus outsourcing
• The most cost-efficient combination of water supplies, while maintaining regulatory permits: 105 million gallons per day (mgd) of groundwater, 55 mgd of surface water and 4 mgd of desalinated seawater
• Using $5.3 million from the utility’s rate stabilization fund
• Projected water delivery to Tampa Bay Water’s member governments is 164 mgd.
• Finding efficiencies in the budget allows the agency to hold the line on the wholesale rate despite implementing programs such as an asset management program, a computerized maintenance and monitoring system and the Long-Term Master Water Supply Plan.
• The cost of wholesale water remains affordable when compared to other household expenses including about $20 per month for wholesale water for an average household using 8,000 gallons per month; $50 per month for standard cable TV service; $60 per month for mobile phone service; $50 per month for standard broadband internet service; and $100 per month for electricity service.
Tampa Bay Water is a not for profit, governmental agency whose financial structure is maintained through the sale of drinking water to its six member governments. Its capital and operating costs are paid through the collection of a uniform water rate that is assessed to six-member governments.