Concerns about water tax

Rob Toerien, Constantia Hills

I am confused as to how costs of future water usage will be calculated based on the incoming increases.

Based on the following information: 6kl = R179.58; 10.5kl = R415.16 ie + 4.5kl/ +R235.58

How would usage of say 6,5kl or 7kl be calculated.

Concern 1: Would the first 6kl attract a cost of R179.58 and the additional over and above this amount attract a pro-rata cost based on the 10.5kl cost of R415.16?

On a pro-rata over-usage basis, the cost difference is +R235.58 and the kl over-usage above 6kl is +4,5kl. Therefore we should be paying the initial R179.58 on 6kl plus R52.35 for every additional kilolitre used over and above the initial 6kl

Or, with the use of say 7kl, would the full increment cost of R415.16 come into effect?

Should this ursury method apply, besides being highway robbery, it would have the reverse effect on what is wanted.

If you use, say, 7kl and are then charged with the full R415.16, this would be a huge encouragement for people to adopt the attitude of “I have to pay R415.16 for 7kl, so I may as well go the whole hog for the same price and use up to 10,5kl!”

Concern 2: The other thing all water users must watch is their water readings.

My last reading was on Monday January 22, ie ten days usage in January at what should be at the old tariff costing.

I photographed my water gauge on the morning of Thursday February 1 and will now want to see if I, say, use 3kl in the January period and then a further 3kl in the February (new tariff) period, whether am I going to be charged the full new tariff of R415.16.

Watch your accounts carefully and appeal if necessary as we could be in for a one-off January/February transition rip-off.

I have emailed senior management at City of Cape Town accounts department four times and no replies at all – makes you wonder?

Many may have thought they had over-used during December 2017 / January 2018; not so, as this consumption period was for 40 days and so the incorrect stats go on.

On behalf of your readers please get detailed information on these two concerns.

* Deputy mayor, Ian Neilson responds: In response to the resident’s first concern, the City employs a stepped-tariff system, whereby the price per kilolitre progressively increases each time a customer exceeds a consumption threshold during the month.

Under Level 6 tariffs, non-indigent domestic customers are billed at R29.93/kl for the first 6kl, R52.44/kl for the next 4.5kl, R114/kl for the next 9.5kl, and so forth. Full tariff details can be found on the City’s website

In response to the second concern, Level 6 tariffs will only be applied from February 1. Monthly consumption is first reduced to an average daily consumption between readings, and only the proportion of the consumption after February 1 will be charged at the new Level 6 tariff rate.