Water Rate Structure Review – 2015/16

At Environment Committee, May 19, 2015

On May 19, 2015, Ottawa’s Environment Committee considered a staff report on the long awaited Water, Wastewater and Stormwater Rate Structure Review.  The report recommends overall guiding principles for the restructuring of the way the City charges for these services and proposes to return by Q1 2016 with a proposal.  (Here is the slide deck used by staff at Committee.)

The recommendations were accepted by Committee and, on May 27, at Council but with an amendment proposed by Councillor Brockington to make all principles of equals weight, not in order of importance.  These principles are: Fairness and Equity, Financial Sustainability, Affordability, Transparency, Preserves Conservation, and Supports Economic Development.

Previous reports on this subject were:

+ In April 2010, staff recommended a specific new structure.

+ In June 2009, staff tabled four options, for information.  Included in this report is a technical memorandum from Raftelis Financial Consultants.

+ In 2008, the Auditor General issued “Review of the City’s Water Rate,” (chapter 3.19 of the 2008 Annual Report [2 MB]) with a Follow-up report in 2010.


Councillor Jeff Leiper commissioned a report on Ottawa’s water rates from LAC & Associates (October 2015), which contains much useful information.


Next: The Greenspace Alliance’s submission on May 19.

And: After the Spring 2016 consultations, the City’s new proposals

And: What Waterloo, Halifax and Victoria are doing