To maintain and improve Union County’s water and wastewater system, the Board of Governors and Union County Board of Commissioners approved a new water and wastewater rate schedule on December 2, 2019.
The new rate schedule includes annual rate increases of 15.5% effective February 1, 2020 and January 1, 2021. The rate increases help fund investment and maintenance in water and wastewater projects over the next two years totaling $305.8 million to ensure safe and reliable water for residents of Union County.
Why is Union County raising its water and wastewater rates?
The increase is necessary to fund the utility’s Capital Improvement Program, which includes $305.8 million invested over the next two years in projects to maintain and improve our water and wastewater infrastructure. These improvements ensure that we will continue to provide customers with high-quality water and wastewater services.
How much will the average monthly bill increase?
In 2020, for the average ratepayer using 5,000 gallons of water each month, the increase will be approximately $4.50 per month for water service; or approximately $11.50 for combined water and wastewater service. Please see the graphic below for additional information.
What is a ratepayer?
Ratepayers are customers of Union County Public Works. Development and maintenance of the water and wastewater system is paid for solely from revenue generated through the sale of water and wastewater service.
Are tax dollars used for any projects related to water and/or wastewater improvements?
No. All projects to develop or improve Union County’s water and/or wastewater system are paid for with revenue generated from ratepayers of Union County Public Works.
Where will the majority of the money generated go?
The majority of revenue from the new rate will go toward the Yadkin Regional Water Supply Project. The Yadkin Regional Water Supply Project addresses the County’s need for an additional long-term, sustainable water supply to meet current and future demand for water. The $299 million investment includes a new water intake and pump station in Norwood on Lake Tillery; and a water supply pipeline to bring water to a new water treatment plant in Union County. A drinking water pipeline will deliver water to Union County’s Yadkin River Basin customers. The project has been in planning since 2004 and is nearing 60% completion of its design plans.
Why are we investing in infrastructure outside of Union County?
Union County does not have a natural source of water. Union County receives water from the Catawba River and the Yadkin River. Neither water source is located in Union County. In order to provide long-term reliable water for Union County residents, we must invest in infrastructure to bring water to the County from both water sources.
Who should I contact with additional questions?
Our Customer Service representatives are happy to answer additional questions. They may be reached by calling 704.296.4210.
Figure 1: Bill Estimates
Figure 2: Comparison with Other Utilities
Figure 3: Public Works Capital Projects 2020-2021