Water Rates Update from City of San Diego Public Utilities Department

Good morning Del Cerro:
I received an update regarding water rates from Brent Eidson, the Deputy Director of External Affairs for the City of San Diego’s Public Utilities Department.

Jay, the Public Utilities Department learned a lot from our customers earlier this year and has taken a number of steps to improve our meter reading, customer service and approach to addressing customer concerns related to water billing. Some of these improvements may be visible to customers, such as leaving behind a door hanger to let you know that we’ve read your meter or if there is a problem that prevented us from obtaining that read to less obvious changes including internal controls to ensure accurate bills are being issued after the meter reading occurs. Additionally, the City has installed a new “State of the Art Water Meter Test Bench” to validate the accuracy of our water meters. This test bench is used when customers request we test their meter for accuracy, as well as sample testing new meters from the manufacturer before being put into service, and sample testing old meters as they come out of service.

Additionally, the independent City Auditor is conducting a comprehensive audit of the Department’s meter reading and billing operations with a formal report expected by the end of June. The Department has also hired a specialized consultant to conduct an exhaustive review of our entire ‘meter to cash’ operation. This means they are reviewing policies, procedures, protocols, etc. of all aspects of the Department’s operations related to meter reading to bill issuance. We expect to receive a final report in June which may lead to additional operational changes to improve our services for our customers.

While we recognize these are Department level efforts, we are still committed to providing excellent customer service to each of our customers. If a customer still has a concern about his/her individual water bill, we encourage him/her to call us at 619-515-3500 and allow us to help resolve the billing inquiry. We have increased staffing levels at our call center to reduce call wait times.

Brent also included a frequently asked questions sheet. Here is the link.water-billing-faqs

Jay Wilson, Secretary
Del Cerro Action Council

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