The Environmental Finance Center and
Safe Drinking Water Branch
The Environmental Finance Center, in collaboration with the Safe Drinking Water Branch of Hawaii's State Department of Health, has conducted the 2016 water rates survey of nearly all local government and other utilities in the state of Hawaii.
Hawaii's utilities use many different water rate structures. These different rates and rate structures have financial impacts on revenue stability, household expenditures, and water use behavior. Various rate strategies influence resource use differently and, conversely, efforts to curtail resource use (for example, conservation) have unique revenue impacts depending on a utility's rates, rate structure, and customer base. Information on how utilities in Hawaii charge for water services is important for utilities in benchmarking their current rates and financial performance.
The Environmental Finance Center (EFC) and Safe Drinking Water Branch have collected rate sheets from a large majority of the local government and non-governmental utilities across the State of Hawaii. These rate sheets specify how utilities charge water customers for their water use. The participating utilities account for approximately 76 percent of all local government and other ownership type utilities in the state that charge rates, serving the vast majority of all customers served by public water systems. A novel customer expenditure model developed by EFC is used to calculate residential and commercial water and bills for all participating utilities for any consumption amount. The development of the model represents a breakthrough in the methodology for carrying out large sample size utility rates surveys. Customer bills are calculated across a spectrum of customer consumption rather than at one or two discrete consumption levels (e.g. the bill for 5,000 gallons/month). The results give insight to the rate setting objectives in place at a particular utility. For example, a utility might have particularly high bills at large consumption levels to encourage resource conservation or particularly low bills at small consumption levels to make the minimum level of services more affordable. Information on rates and rate structures across the state are reflected in the online, interactive rates dashboard currently under development. The rates dashboard will allow for comparisons and benchmarking of current rates and will assist officials and staff as they make decisions related to water services during budget preparations. This powerful tool should be completed in the first quarter of 2017. Please see below for details.
This Rates Dashboard is included in Smart Management for Small Water Systems nationwide project of the Environmental Finance Center Network (EFCN). The EFCN is composed of numerous Environmental Finance Centers around the country, including the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, which created this dashboard. Smart Managment for Small Water Systems is the result of a cooperative agreement with the United States Environmental Protection Agency.
You can find rates surveys for other states here: Utility Financial Sustainability and Rates Dashboards
Summary Report: A short report summarizing the rates, rate structures and trends currently in use across the State of Hawaii. The report answers frequently asked questions about what utilities are charging, their rate structure designs, affordability and financial sustainability of HI utilities.
2016 (new! as of 8/18/2017)
Tables of Rates: Data tables that list all the details of utilities' residential, non-residential, and residential irrigation water rate structures as well as the monthly-equivalent bills computed at different consumption levels.
2016 (new! as of 8/15/2017)
All EFC tools and publications, such as this rates dashboard, are available for free to the public.
HI Rates Dashboard: An online, interactive visual display of each utility's rates. The dashboard is designed to assist utility managers and local officials with analyzing residential water rates against multiple characteristics, including utility finances, system characteristics, customer base socioeconomic conditions, and geography.
2016 (new! as of 8/18/2017)
To view your utility's rate sheet, please select from the drop down menu. A pdf file of 2-11 pages will appear (requires Adobe Reader). Please note that some utilities may have more than one rate sheet. If you do not find your rate sheet in the dropdown menu, please email a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org (link sends e-mail) or fax a copy to 919-843-2528.
Rates effective as of July 1, 2016. Please contact the utilities directly for the latest, most accurate information.