The City of Cape Town will implement a R115 water delivery charge, as of 1 July 2018. This new fixed delivery charge will enable the City to continue to operate its water supply network.

“The City advertised the fixed water delivery charge as part of the 2018/19water tariffs during the public comment period of the 2018/19 City budget,” said Xanthia Limberg, Mayco member for Water and Waste Services.

Essentially when Capetonians open their water bill in July, they shouldn’t be shocked to find several extra costs, first the water delivery charge, then the water tariff increase and the increase in water prices too.

In an alert posted to the City’s various social media platforms, Dr Gisela Kaiser, Executive Director of Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Management Services, explained that the City’s water demand has been lowered to approximately 500-million litres of water per day.

Effectively, this means that the City is selling half the volume of water it used to sell, but is still required to provide the same services on less revenue. The water delivery charge will be paid by 95% of households – registered indigent households will be exempt from paying this delivery charge.

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“The cost of running the water and sanitation network has not changed in direct proportion to the amount of water used and sold. The same repairs and maintenance are necessary to keep water and sewerage flowing reliably,” Kaiser said in the alert. “In order to keep water flowing in your taps, we have introduced a water delivery charge system. More than 95% of households will pay a monthly charge of R115 or less per month.”

In May, news of a 55.16% increase in water tariffs had the Mother City’s residents in uproar. This steep tariff was reduced to 10.10% after an assessment of the City’s budget was concluded.

The 10.10% water tariff increase will also be effective from 1 July onwards, as this marks the beginning of the 2018/19 financial year for the City.

“After careful and intense consideration of a record 40 000 comments which were received on the proposals in the City of Cape Town’s tabled budget, as well as various portfolio committee meetings, workshops and discussions, the reduced revenue requirement has resulted in substantial changes to the proposed water and sanitation tariff increases to be proposed for Council’s approval of the final Budget on 30 May 2018,” Deputy Mayor of the City of Cape Town, Ian Neilson, said.

Among others, certain proposed domestic, non-indigent water tariff increases have been reduced:
–       Step 1 (less than 6 kl water usage per month): from 55,16% down to 10,10%
–       Step 2 (more than 6 kl but less than 10,5 kl water usage per month): from 6,26% down to 0%

Among others, certain proposed domestic non-indigent sanitation tariff increases have been reduced:
–       Step 1 (less than 4,2 kl per month): from 78,71% down to 9,87%
–       Step 2 (between 4,2 kl and 7,35 kl per month): from 23,74% down to 0%

The City’s dams have reached an average capacity of 40.3% as of Tuesday, 20 June. A notable change from last year when dams levels were a mere 23%. The Berg River has recorded more than 173mm of rainfall over the past week and is almost double the percentage for the same time a year ago.

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Although this rainfall has served to marginally quench the City’s thirst, level 6B water restrictions are still in place to ensure the water is used sparingly to avoid another Day Zero.

To find out what the requirements are to be declared indigent, click here.

Picture: Aman Bhargava/Unsplash

Article written by

Lucinda Dordley

Lucinda is a hard news writer who occasionally dabbles in lifestyle writing, and recent journalism graduate. She is a proud intersectional feminist, and is passionate about actively creating a world which is free of discrimination and inequality.