SEWER SERVICE FEES

Sewer Service Fees (SSF) are established to cover the cost of the operation, maintenance, and capital improvements to the sanitary sewer system.  The rate for each user category is based on water usage and discharge factor, with a billing cap for residential customers.  A description of the various user categories can be found in the Berkeley Municipal Code Section 17.04.010.  SSF are billed on the EBMUD water bill.

The City Council authorized Resolution No. 63,356 - N.S. which increased SSF by 1% for commercial and industrial users and by 3.5% for public agencies, effective July 1, 2006.

On July 10, 2007, City Council authorized Resolution No. 63,775 - N.S. amending Resolution No. 63,356 - N.S. to clarify that the sewer service fee does not automatically terminate as of June 30, 2007, but continues until changed.

SSF RESIDENTIAL RATES FOR FY 2008:

Single Family - One (1) dwelling unit: $3.11 per water unit, $41.66 monthly cap
Duplex - Two (2) dwelling units: $3.17 per water unit, $67.37 monthly cap
Triplex - Three (3) dwelling units: $3.38 per water unit, $99.30 monthly cap
Quadruplex - Four (4) dwelling units: $3.33 per water unit, $115.50 monthly cap
Multiple Family - Five (5) or more DUs: $3.34 per water unit, $38.65 monthly cap per DU

SSF NON-RESIDENTIAL RATES FOR FY 2008:

0.60 Discharge Factor Category $2.27 per water unit
0.70 Discharge Factor Category $2.65 per water unit
0.80 Discharge Factor Category $3.02 per water unit
0.90 Discharge Factor Category $3.39 per water unit
All Other Non-Residential Category $3.78 per water unit

SSF PUBLIC AGENCY RESIDENTIAL RATES FOR FY 2008:

Single Family - One (1) dwelling unit: $2.77 per water unit, $37.19 monthly cap
Duplex - Two (2) dwelling units: $2.83 per water unit, $60.10 monthly cap
Triplex - Three (3) dwelling units: $3.01 per water unit, $88.49 monthly cap
Quadruplex - Four (4) dwelling units: $2.97 per water unit, $103.02 monthly cap
Multiple Family - Five (5) or more DUs: $3.52 per water unit, $34.48 monthly cap per DU

SSF PUBLIC AGENCY NON-RESIDENTIAL RATES FOR FY 2008:

0.60 Discharge Factor Category $1.82 per water unit
0.70 Discharge Factor Category $2.12 per water unit
0.80 Discharge Factor Category $2.43 per water unit
0.90 Discharge Factor Category $2.73 per water unit
All Other Customer Usage - 1.0 Discharge Factor Category $3.03 per water unit

1 water unit = 100 cubic feet = 1 Ccf = 748 gallons
DU = Dwelling Unit

The term "Public agency" is defined in the California Government Code §54999.1(c) to mean "the United States or any of its agencies, the state or any of its agencies, the Regents of the University of California, a county, a city, a district, a public authority, or any other political subdivision or public corporation of this state."

For information and questions on Sewer Service Fees, contact a Finance Customer Service representative at (510) 981-7200.

Landlords & Tenants

For Tenancies begun prior to January 1, 1999

Prior to 1997, sewer charges were billed to and paid by property owners on their property tax bill.  Therefore, under the City's rent control ordinance, the sewer charge is considered a housing service provided to the unit as part of the rent.  As such, sewer charges are the property owner's responsibility.  To account for the change in billing that put the sewer fees on the EBMUD water bill that is often paid by the tenant, the Rent Board adopted Regulation 1269.5 which allows tenants to pass any costs incurred by the change in billing on to the landlord.

Some options are:

1) The tenant can pay the bill and the landlord can reimburse the tenant.

2) The tenant can pay the bill. Then, the landlord can allow the tenant to deduct the sewer portion from his/her rent.

3) Make any other arrangement to which both parties agree upon.

For Tenancies begun on or after January 1, 1999

For tenancies begun on or after January 1, 1999, the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act (Civil Code section 1954.50 et seq.)  allows landlords to establish the initial rent to be paid for a unit, including the housing services paid for by the rent.  Therefore, for these tenancies, the landlord and tenant are free to negotiate who will be responsible for paying the sewer fees at the commencement of the tenancy.

Remember: the EBMUD customer of record must pay the entire water bill, including sewer charges.  Therefore, the bill should always be paid.  If you are due a reimbursement, it can be worked out later.

For questions on the rights and obligations of landlords and tenants, call the Rent Board at (510) 981-7368.

The Berkeley Municipal Code is now accessible via the City's Records Online Search Application. Select Document Type "Municipal Code", and enter the Title/Chapter Number/Name, or search terms, in the Search Text field. Code documents are presented in Adobe Acrobat PDF. In order to view PDF files, you must have a PDF document viewer.

You can download a free copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader: GetAdobeLogo

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