Department of Public Works

Rates, Fees and Affordability Programs Project

The Water Resources Division is undertaking a comprehensive effort in Fiscal Year 2020 (July 2019 - June 2020) to:

  • Conduct enhanced financial planning to ensure that Burlington's Water, Wastewater and Stormwater utilities have the sustainable funding needed to maintain and enhance our high quality level of service through robust operations and continued long-term capital improvements.

  • Improve rate and fee structures to mitigate the impact of future rate increases on low-volume residential customers

  • Implement affordability programs (customer assistance programs) to assist economically disadvantaged ratepayers (such as a lifeline or discount program)


For more information about this project's scope of work, click here.

We need your feedback and engagement!  See below for a listing of the different phases of the project and meeting dates (as meetings are scheduled). 

Have a question or comment?   Email us or call 863-4501 (8 am- 4:30 pm).


Process Outline and Public Engagement Opportunities

Phase 1: Initial Public Engagement/Education (October 2019 - November 2019)

In this phase we hope to educate the public about what services the Water, Wastewater and Stormwater utilities provide the City and to orient rate payers to the suite of options we are considering with regard to achieving financial sustainability and rate payer affordability. 

As part of this process we want to confirm alignment with some of the guiding principles  and strategies of our study as well as gather new ideas from our users about areas we haven't considered exploring.

Events and Engagement opportunities:

October 29: Public Meeting and Open House, 6-8 pm @ Contois Auditorium.  

Presentation from Public Meeting and Open House

Video of 10/29 Presentation (via Facebook Live)



November  NPA meetings

Water Resources staff will be visiting all NPAs to brief neighbors on the project and let ratepayers know how to ask questions, provide their input and offer their own ideas! 

  • November 6, Ward 6th - 7:35 pm
  • November 13, Ward 1/8 - 8 pm
  • November 14, Ward 2/3 - pending confirmation
  • November 20, Ward 4/7 - pending confirmation
  • December 19, Ward 5 - time TBD


Phase 2: Develop Initial Options for Rate Structure, Fees and Affordability Program and Report to City Council (November 2019- February 2020)

In this phase we will hone in on and then recommend a number of options to the City Council for restructuring the rates, creating or updating certain fees (one time or specific to a certain user group) to recover certain costs and creating affordability programs to ensure that income disadvantaged ratepayers can continue to access clean water.  

Events and Engagement opportunities:

Worksession with City Council Members (open to the public) (date TBD)

March NPA Meetings


Unable to attend in person? Copies of project information materials are available below: 


Phase 3: Finalize Rate Structure, Fee and Affordability Programs Proposal (February - April 2020)

Based on the outcome of Phase 2, the project team will recommend a final proposal for any new rate structures, fees and/or affordability measures to the Council for approval.  

Events and Engagement opportunities:

Board of Finance and City Council Meeting ( April dateTBD)