How are my rates determined?

Many District customers, especially those who have just moved to the area, have questions about what makes up the cost of their bi-monthly bill.  Some of the factors that affect our rates are serving customers within the Lake Whatcom Watershed, the unique topography of our district, and planning for future maintenance and improvements.  Click here for more detailed information about how rates are set.

Why does my bill amount change from month to month?

Washington State Law requires that all water systems serving 15 or more residential service connections be metered.  Your water meter measures the volume of water used in your home and from fixtures on your property.  Click here for more information about metered water.

Water use from 0-600 cubic feet per billing period is covered by the base rate.  If more than 600 cubic feet are used, customers are charged per 100 cubic feet.  1 cubic foot of water is 7.48 gallons.

If you use more water in a billing cycle than normal, your bill will increase.  Thinking back to the months covered, did you have guests in your home?  Did you fill a pool or hot tub, a pressure washer, or a watering hose?  Did you have a leaky faucet or discover a toilet was running?  Any of these things can affect your water usage over time.  Many customers bills tend to be higher during the summer months.

Do you offer paperless billing?

Customers may set up paperless billing through our partner, Xpress Billpay.  Unfortunately, only property owners (not tenants) are able to set up paperless billing.

When do rate increases occur?

Lake Whatcom Water & Sewer District rates undergo a small rate increase each year.  Depending on the area you live in, you will see the increase each year either on your March 1 or April 1 bill.  Click here for more information about our rates.

My water has been turned off. How do I have it turned back on?

For accounts where water and sewer service charges are not paid within sixty days of the billing date, the District may interrupt water service and padlock the meter.  For information on how to have your water service restored, please see below.

If your bill is current and you do not have water, please call us at 360-734-9224 so we can help!

Restoring Suspended Water Service:

In order to have service restored, the bill must be paid in full.  If your service has been suspended, do not make payment through Xpress Bill Pay, payment must be received by our office directly.

During office hours (8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Monday-Thursday), you may make a payment in person or over the phone for the account balance. A $75 lock fee will be added to the next bill.

Outside of regular office hours (After 4:00 p.m. Monday – Thursday or anytime on weekends) you may call to have your meter unlocked.  Payment in full, including the additional after-hours unlock fee of $150 must be received over the phone or at the office by noon the next business day, or the meter will be re-locked.

Do not remove the lock from your meter box yourself.  If a lock is cut or removed without District authorization, an additional $250 fee will apply.

Water Utility Reconnection during Heat-related Alerts

Pursuant to HB 1329 passed by the Washington State Legislature during its 2023 general session and subsequently signed into law by Governor Inslee, effective July 23, 2023, the District will not terminate water service due to lack of payment for residential customers on any day for which the national weather service has issued or has announced that it intends to issue a heat-related alert within the District’s service area. Further, any residential customer whose water service has been disconnected for lack of payment may request that the District reconnect water service on any day for which the national weather service has issued or has announced that it intends to issue a heat-related alert within the District’s service area. To request reconnection for the period under which the heat alert is in effect, please contact the District at 360-734-9224.