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WATER METER PROGRAM FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
The District of Peachland adopted its Water Master Plan based on the following vision:
"To provide a safe, reliable and affordable supply of water for the District of Peachland". The plan recognizes the importance of demand management and water conservation. In 2007, As part of the Westside Joint Water Committee the District of Peachland began the universal installation of water meters. Water meters are an important tool for measuring demand for treated water. They provide a fair and equitable payment system that is based on the principal of "user pay". The use of water meters will result in reduced water usage, reduced repair costs on existing equipment, and provide an opportunity for individuals to reduce their water bills by controlling consumption.
WHAT IS THE BASE RATE FOR?
The base rate is used to sustain the day to day operations of Peachland's water system (such as equipment, materials and labour). The consumption rate depends on how much water you consume. There is no monthly charge for the individual water meters themselves.
I GO AWAY IN THE WINTER. DO I STILL HAVE TO PAY FOR WATER?
Yes. You will still need to pay the base rate which, for a single detached residence, means that you will be paying $55.50 (during a 3 month period) for the time you're away and there is no water used.
IF I DON'T USE WATER IN ONE BILLING PERIOD, CAN I USE IT LATER?
No. The water system in Peachland has been designed to accommodate anticipated peak flows over the next 20 years. Allowing users to stock pile their water use would result in higher peak flows during certain times of year (i.e., the summer). No stockpiling means that a more sustainable water system can be maintained so users won't have to pay higher costs related to upgrading or expanding infrastructure.
DO I NEED TO HAVE A METER INSTALLED?
Yes. To ensure the safety of the water system, all users must have a meter installed. If you have a meter installed before September 2008 then installation will be free. Once billing begins, those without meters will be charged a higher flat rate than metered users to ensure water costs are adequately recovered.
WHAT IS THE MOCK CONSUMPTION RATE FOR A SINGLE FAMILY DWELLING?
The consumption rate for a single detached dwelling is based on a two-tiered (escalating) rate structure. During the mock billing period the first 400 m3 of water in each quarter is assessed at $.30 per m3 with usage above the assessed at $.50 m3 in order to promote water conservation.
I HAVE AN AGRICULTURAL METER. WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
There is currently an acreage charge for properties that are greater than 1/2 acre. 145 agricultural meters have been installed in Peachland to track water use on these properties.
For bona fide agricultural operations (Class 9 farm status or properties within the Agricultural Land Reserve), we will only be measuring consumption at this time. For non-bona fide agricultural operations, there is no base rate but a consumption rate of $.30 per m3 is charged for all water used. Council is considering options regarding those properties that do not qualify for an agricultural rate, but have extensive fruit trees or other food production.
I LIVE IN A MULTI-FAMILY BUILDING. WHAT WILL THIS MEAN FOR ME?
The base rate is established according to the size of the meter, with a consumption rate of $0.30 per m3. Each property will receive one meter and one bill. If individual meters are desired for each household, the strata council can have meters installed by a licensed plumber, to be read and proportionally billed accordingly by the strata council.
WHO OWNS THE METER?
The District of Peachland owns each meter but property owners are responsible for keeping them in good condition You are not allowed to tamper with your meter.
I OWN A COMMERCIAL, INDUSTRIAL OR INSTITUTIONAL PROPERTY. WHAT WILL THIS MEAN TO ME?
The base rate is established according to the size of the meter with a consumption rate of $0.30 per m3. Each property will receive one meter and one bill. If individual meters are desired for each unit, you can have meters installed by a licensed plumber, to be read and billed accordingly by the building manager.
HOW IS MY METER READ?
Reading are taken remotely, using a radio signal to transmit the data, so no one will need to enter your property to read your meter.