Richmond utility rates will go up starting in July

Richmond utility rates will go up starting in July
Richmond City Hall. (Source: Google Earth)

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Utility bills for Richmond residents will be going up.

The Richmond City Council approved the increases May 13, and the new charges will take effect beginning in July.

The total increase, according to the Department of Public Utilities, is expected to be about $6 on average for Richmond customers, or about 4 percent.

Natural gas rates will see a 3.5-percent increase, leading to an estimated $1.86 more per month for all customers. Water rates will rise an estimated $1.41 for customers using 100 cubic feet of water, and wastewater customers will see an estimated increase of $2.39 for the same amount of usage.

DPU said typical residents will see a 4-percent increase in their stormwater bills, which is about 16 cents. Stormwater rates are a flat fee based on the amount of impervious area the property contains. A breakdown of that fee is below:

  • Tier 1 (1000 or less sq. ft. of impervious area) will pay $2.23 per month
  • Tier 2 (1,001 - 2,000 sq. ft. of impervious area) will pay $4.10 per month
  • Tier 3 (2,001 – 3,000 sq. ft. of impervious area) will pay $6.67 per month
  • Tier 4 (3,001 – 4,000 sq. ft. of impervious area) will pay $9.51 per month
  • Tier 5 (4,001 sq. ft. or more of impervious area) will pay $13.78 per month

Richmond Gas Works and DPU offer payment assistance program year-round. Those program are listed below:

  • Equal Monthly Payment Program (EMPP) - Annual charges are averaged and payments are spread evenly over 12 months.
  • MetroCare Heat Bill Pay Assistance Program - Those eligible families receive funds to help paying their primary heating bills due to a financial difficulty or other special hardship.
  • FLOW (For the Love Of Water) Bill Pay Assistance Program - Those eligible families receive funds to help paying their primary water bills due to a financial difficulty or other special hardship.
  • FLOW Conservation Program - Financial assistance is provided to eligible homeowners for plumbing repairs and the replacement of water-inefficient appliances.
  • SeniorCare Program - Senior customers at 65 and older can sign up for Winter Service Assurance with no late fees, a security deposit waiver program, annual weatherization kit giveaways and third party notification.

For more information on payment programs, visit the City of Richmond website.

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