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AWA Consolidation Raises Rates, Hinders Future Protests

On June 18, 2013, the Amador Water Agency Board of Directors conducted the mandatory Proposition 218 public hearing for final consideration and adoption of their latest rate increase proposal. After counting over a thousand written protests and in spite of four pages of legal issues raised the Ratepayer Protection Alliance (RPA), the board of directors unanimously adopted the new consolidated rate structure at a continuation hearing Thursday morning. Because of AWA’s action, ratepayers who receive no benefit from the GSL will receive rate increases. Worst of all, the consolidation will most likely prevent any future protests against rate increases. Without legal action to reverse the board’s decision, the ratepayers are now fully at the mercy of the AWA. More info...

Success Stories

Read about local ratepayers who have successfully protested rate increases.
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About Prop 218

Passed by voters in 1996, Proposition 218 amended the California Constitution to require cities, governments and special districts to allow affected property owners to protest any proposed new or increased property-related fees.
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Water Rate Issues

Amador Water Agency (AWA) supplies almost all of Amador’s water that comes from public water systems. If you have a water bill, chances are much or all of the cost of your water goes to AWA. Use the Water dropdown menu above to find your system and learn more about how your rates are affected by decisions that your public officials make. Use the Amador Water Service Map if you aren’t sure which system you buy water from.

Every AWA water users' costs have increased at least 2.5 times faster than the Consumer Price Index (CPI). Some costs have increased as much as 7 times faster than the CPI. AWA tells the public that the costs are increasing because of increases in fuel costs, electrical costs and State fees to the Agency. In reality, each of those costs is actually LESS than it was in 2006. The reasons for AWA’s huge increases vary from system to system, but high upper management salaries and subsidies to real estate speculators are where most of ratepayer funds are wasted. Salaries and benefits for operations at AWA have increased by $560,000 and debt service payments have increased by $1.2 million since 2006.

Many ratepayers haven’t seen the worst of their problems yet. On some systems, AWA has overspent their budget and has indebted ratepayers without asking for rate increases. The wasted funds will eventually need to be paid by ratepayers.

AWA will ask ratepayers for higher rates to repay the borrowed funds. Ratepayers can keep AWA from continuing to squander their money. They must first demand that AWA stop the waste. Ratepayers do have control, they can simply protest rate increases until AWA fixes its financial problems.

Amador Water Agency Service Map (click map for larger version)
AWA Water Service Map