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Philly’s Case for Unique Water Pricing Model

08 June 2017
Research Note

Philadelphia is implementing an new water pricing model, making it the first city in the U.S. to establish water rates based on income.

On 1 July 2017 Philadelphia’s tiered assistance program (TAP), an income-based water rate structure, will go into effect. Unpaid water bills exceeding US$170 million, coupled with 40% of customers falling behind on bill payments at any given time, has compelled PWD to adopt this new rate structure.

This shift is part of a broader national discussion regarding the affordability of water in an era of rising water rates to pay for critical infrastructure improvements.

In this Research Note, Bluefield water experts analyze this new pricing structure, the reasons behind it, and other innovative ways water utilities are working to recoup costs.  See more recent analysis available through our US & Canada Municipal Water Infrastructure service.

Takeaways

  • Innovative pricing structure insulates poor from rising water rates.
  • Delinquency undermines water and sewer services, forcing new strategy.
  • Nationally, water utilities seek innovative strategies to recoup water utility costs.

Companies Mentioned

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