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City Looks to Hike Water Rate by 8.5% in FY25

The increase suggested by the city Department of Environmental Protection would add about $8 per month to the bill of a typical single-family home.

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) on Friday proposed an 8.5% increase in the Fiscal Year 2025 (FY25) water rate during a presentation to the New York City Water Board.

The rate hike would still keep the cost of water in the city well below the national average, the agency said through a news release. 

If the 8.5% water rate increase is adopted by the board, a typical single-family homeowner will see an increase from $1,088 per year to $1,181 per year for water and sewer bills—an increase of $7.71 per month (based on an average consumption of 70,000 gallons of water per year), the agency said.

A typical multi-family unit with metered billing will see an increase from $808 per year, per unit to $877 per year, per unit—an increase of $5.73 per month (based on an average consumption of 52,000 gallons of water per year).

One reason for the rate hike is the halt in water and sewer lien sale since FY2019, the agency said. 

Historically, the lien sale process for water and sewer receivables has been an effective tool for managing past due water and sewer bills. But due to the stoppage, the balance for accounts receivable has grown to over $1 billion and this contributes directly to the need for a water rate increase, the agency said.

The Administration is working with the City Council on a possible reauthorization of the lien-sale, according to the news release.

In addition, the agency said it began mailing Water Shutoff Notices to more than 600 seriously delinquent accounts at the end of 2023. This resulted in approximately $3 million in customer payments to date. DEP is also partnering with outside counsel to collect large unpaid balances from multi-family properties.

The proposed rate is subject to review and approval by the New York City Water Board. There will be a public hearing in each of the five boroughs during May and June where residents will have the opportunity to provide their input. 

The Brooklyn public hearing is on June 4 at 6:00pm at Saint Francis College, 179 Livingston Street, 5th floor.

Following the public hearings, the Water Board is scheduled to meet on June 13 to consider and adopt an FY25 budget and water and wastewater rates. The new rates would become effective on July 1, 2024.