Although Californians are legally guaranteed the human right to safe, clean, affordable and accessible water, many communities in California face exceedingly high water rates. A study by CWC and our partners, “Assessing Water Affordability,” found that 18% of water systems in the Tulare Lake Basin had unaffordable rates. Some families were paying up to 10 percent of their monthly income on water alone.
As a result of AB 401 (Dodd), which CWC supported last year, the State Water Board is now required to develop a plan for a Low-Income Water Rate Assistance Program. The Board is beginning its plan scoping by holding a series of public meetings to seek recommendations. The first meeting to shape California’s future water affordability program will be in Fresno on Wednesday, October 12th, at 6pm. There will also be meetings in Redding, Inglewood, Oakland, and Bakersfield. We strongly encourage you to attend one of these meetings if you have an unaffordable water rate or work with communities that have unaffordable water rates. Check out the schedule for the upcoming meetings, and learn more about AB 401 here! Contact CWC’s Asha Kreiling at Asha.Kreiling@CommunityWaterCenter.org or at (916)706-3346 if you have an unaffordable water rate or want to get involved in a campaign to ensure water affordability.