New Excise Tax On Water Goes Into Effect In Phoenix

July 22, 2014

Residents and business owners in the city of Phoenix will see higher water bills starting this month. That’s because the city council passed a user tax to balance the city’s budget.

Residential water users in Phoenix will notice an additional $1.50 tax posted on their water bills. That’s $18 a year. Some businesses that use a lot of water could see their rates jump up another $75 each month. 

Tracy Reber is with the Phoenix Budget office. She said the higher water rates saved other city services from deep cuts.

“It’s to help support general fund services such as public safety and criminal justice, senior programs and recreational services because we were facing a budget deficit at the time,” Reber said.

The new tax is expected to raise almost $10 million a year. The city council also passed some spending cuts and raised parking meter fees and memberships for community centers to wipe out the $37 million deficit.