Printer Friendly Version

Frequently Asked Questions

Amendments to The City’s Utility Bylaw could give Red Deerians more control over their water and wastewater utility bill. These changes will ensure The City can continue to provide the services we have and plan for those we need.

1. Why is The City making these changes?
As part of The City’s ongoing commitment to understanding, protecting, and improving our environmental performance and public services, City Council adopted the Environmental Master Plan (EMP) in 2011. The EMP presents goals, benchmarks, and actions to achieve a 25 year vision for Red Deer’s environmental future. One of the priorities is to encourage Red Deer utility users to conserve water. This means reviewing water and wastewater rate structures to draw attention to the value of water.

The City of Red Deer has two main priorities in making changes to the water and wastewater utility rate models: 1) to potentially reward Red Deer utility users for conserving water; and 2) to distribute charges for water and wastewater fairly across all customer classes.

2. Will my utility bill go up?
All customers receiving water and wastewater utilities from The City of Red Deer will be impacted, although the changes will affect different customers in different ways.

The new water and wastewater rate structures will better link the amount you use, with the amount you pay – giving you more control over your bill. The cost to maintain services will be distributed equitably; however, customers who use more than average volumes of water and wastewater may see an increase in their bill. Customers who use less than average volumes of water may see a reduction. Average consumption for residential customers is about 17 cubic meters per month. Your consumption can be found on your water bill – check your bill and see where you stand. Average usage for non-residential customers varies depending on the size of their water meter. The bottom line: You have the ability to influence your bill. 

3. Will these changes be made all at once?
No. Because some customers will see an increase in their bill, the changes will be made gradually over several years (likely 5 years). This will give you an opportunity to review and, if necessary, change your water consumption to lower your bill. Initial changes will come into effect January 1, 2013.

4. What is The City of Red Deer doing to conserve water?
Total per capita water consumption in Red Deer is approximately 386 litres per person per day. Water use is split among two sectors: residential (approximately 50 per cent); and industrial, institutional, commercial, and municipal (approximately 50 per cent).

It is important for The City to lead by example, so we’ve implemented the Water Conservation Strategy. The first part of the strategy identifies several opportunities to conserve water within municipal operations. The City is in the process of implementing these initiatives and will continue to look for ways to reduce our water waste and increase our water efficiency and effectiveness. 

5. What can I do to conserve water?
Because the amount you pay is better linked with the amount you use, it's common for a utility bill to increase when you're hosting guests, have leaky faucets, or watering your lawn. Try these tips for conserving water:
  • upgrade older toilets with water efficient models;
  • collect rain water to water your garden;
  • when doing laundry, match the water level to the size of your load;
  • when washing dirty dishes by hand, don't let the water run while rinsing. Fill one sink with wash water and the other with rinse water.

Visit the water conservation section for more tips.