The Edmond Sun

December 11, 2012

Water rates rise as part of 5-year plan

James Coburn
The Edmond Sun

EDMOND — November marked the third year of a five-year multi-rate water and sewer rate adjustments since the City Council adopted new rates in 2010. Rates generally increased by 5 percent to address the city’s future water needs, said a city official.

The increase was adopted to bring in $163.8 million, including $61.4 million in bonds and financing for internal capital needs and $102.5 million for a Sardis Lake water line for a total of $122 million in bonds until 2020.

The use of pipelines bringing water to central Oklahoma will be beyond capacity by 2020, according to the Regional Raw Water Study. Central Oklahoma’s water needs are expected to more than double before 2060, according to Camp Dresser and McKee (CDM) consultant engineers.

A group of 15 central Oklahoma municipalities including Edmond and Oklahoma City are collaborating in an investigation of long-term water resource solutions.

Sardis Lake in southeastern Oklahoma could supply a future 110-mile water pipeline going parallel to Oklahoma City’s Atoka pipeline. The Atoka pipeline alone could not carry the volume required for Edmond’s population projection of 114,000 residents in 2020, according to CDM.

Edmond’s water fund totaled $21.5 million in June for 4.2 billion gallons of water sold at a price of $0.0051 per gallon, compared to $18.6 million for 3.9 billion gallons of water sold at a price of $0.0048 per gallon during the same period a year ago. In 2010, the city sold 3.3 billion gallons of water at a price of 0.0045 per gallon for $14.8 million in revenue, according to the city finance director’s office.

“Obviously, each year is dependent on the weather — dry or wet — so the only fair comparison is how the price per gallon changed due to the rate increases passed by the Council,” said Ross VanderHamm, city finance director.

TO VIEW a chart on water service rates, visit the city’s website at