Posts Tagged ‘water rates’

March 23, 2011

Water Rate Increase Effective April 1

Last October, the Des Moines Water Works Board of Trustees approved water rate increases that will be effective on water bills beginning April 1.  Water availability charges for most residential customers will increase $1 per month.  Volume charges for water will increase $0.27 for residential customers in the City of Des Moines.  Total water charges for a typical four-person household will increase approximately $3.00 per month.  On average, a two-person household will see a total increase of approximately $2.00 per month.

For more information on the rate increase, please refer to an October 2010 blog article.

If you have any questions regarding your bill, please contact a Customer Service Representative at (515) 283-8700.

Posted by: Peggy Freese No Comments
Labels: , , , Posted in Board of Trustees, Rates November 9, 2010

What is DMWW Doing to Control Costs?

DMWW sets water rates to adequately fund operation and infrastructure investments to ensure high quality water to our customers.  Even though water consumption has declined, the utility has experienced rising costs.  DMWW pays all of its operating expenses but is not collecting sufficient revenue to pay for the needed infrastructure improvements. Instead of taking on debt to invest in improvements, a water rate increase has been approved to help bring revenues in line with costs.

Costs increased 8% in 2009 due to treatment chemicals, system maintenance labor and materials, lime softening residuals disposal and employee benefits.  Staffing levels vary little in periods of reduced consumption.  Our treatment facilities and distribution system must be maintained regardless of the amount of water consumed. 

DMWW has a constant focus on containing costs.  Recent efforts to reduce costs include:

  • The addition of two treatment plants, one in 2000 and one later this year, resulted in only one staff addition
  • Customer pre-termination calls that have reduced field service collection cuts by 25%, thereby allowing field service staff to focus on other areas like more frequent testing of large meters
  • E-Statements to reduce the cost of billing
  • Automated processing of bills, thereby eliminating a nightly IT operator position
  • A work-from-home program for customer service resulting in handling more calls/account activity per customer representative
  • Coordinated with Polk County on a joint asphalt project that saved us $150,000
  • Reduction of senior management by 20%
  • A 0% salary increase to DMWW management team and professionals in 2010
  • Successful application for over $5 million in FEMA funding for riverbank repairs to protect our treatment plant collector well system
Posted by: Peggy Freese No Comments
Labels: , , , , , Posted in Board of Trustees, Infrastructure, Rates October 10, 2010

Des Moines Water Works Using Social Media

You may wonder why a water utility would need more online presence than a website.  Des Moines Water Works’ (DMWW) social media endeavor is in alignment with our 2010-2014 Strategic Plan. We realize the way the world communicates has changed, and we want to be where our customers are. If that means participating in blogging, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, we’re ready to be there.

Our management team is very much on board with this new initiative, and on this blog you’ll be hearing from many employees from every corner of our organization. From the treatment plants to the Botanical Center, to Water Works Park, we’re bringing the best insights from our people directly to you. We hope you enjoy this blog, and comment frequently. We’re listening.

What do we hope to accomplish?

  • Increase public awareness of the value of water
  • Promote stewardship of our natural resources
  • Post current DMWW news
  • Promote events at the Botanical Center and in the parks
  • Educate water consumers
  • Inform the public of our involvement and initiatives with various associations
  • Share pertinent information about the Utility (Did you know DMWW was recognized by Forbes in 2008 for having the highest quality drinking water in the USA?)
  • Attract qualified applicants, and
  • Interact with the community, residential and business customers, industry and government partners

We’re on Facebook as Des Moines Water Works, and Twitter at DSMH2O. Please join the conversation!

We welcome your feedback.  Are there topics of particular interest to you?  Let us know how we can improve service to you, our customers.

Posted by: Randy Beavers 3 Comments
Labels: , , , Posted in About Us, Customers, Des Moines Botanical Center, Des Moines Water Works Park, Education, History, Maffitt Reservoir, Public Policy, Value of Water