Travis County commissioners unanimously voted to raise the price of bulk water at an Aug. 13 meeting.
Commissioners Jeff Travillion, who represents Precinct 1, and Margaret Gomez, who represents Precinct 4, were absent.
Currently, non-potable bulk water is sold at $0.25 per 100 gallons to residential water customers and $0.50 per 100 gallons to commercial water customers.
However, these rates are “significantly below the cost to provide the water services,” county staff wrote in a brief. Additionally, there is no clear way to distinguish between residential versus commercial use.
To recover the full costs of providing bulk water services, the county’s Transportation & Natural Resources Department recommended commissioners raise the price for all customers to $12.28 per 100 gallons.
This price is aligned with what other providers in the area are charging, according to the brief.
Although this change will not help the county increase its revenue, it will help it manage its costs.
This is critical in light of the coming property tax revenue cap, which state lawmakers approved during the most recent legislative session.
The cap will take effect in October 2020 and is forecasted to cost the county more than $176 million in property tax revenue in the first five years it is in place.