FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

HOW DO I SIGN-UP FOR WATER SERVICE?

Request for water service shall be filed with the District.  The new applicant receives a pre-application form and remits a nonrefundable $50.00 fee.  For a printable form, please click here. The District then conducts a field investigation and consults their engineering firm when necessary to verify the capacity of service.  A cost estimate is then provided to the new applicant.  A one time connection fee is charged to the new applicant plus all excavation and pipeline costs required to reach your property from the nearest rural water connection point.  A 10 Year Water Users Agreement and easement is signed by the new applicant.  At limited times Federal Grants and Loans may be secured by the Southwest Regional District to subsidize overall connection costs paid by new applicants within a New Expansion Project Area.
WHAT IS A WATER USER'S AGREEMENT?

A Water User's Agreement must be signed by the property owner for each water meter service constructed.  The Water User's Agreement is a 5 year contractual arrangement between the participating member and the District.  The agreement states that the participating member is responsible for the minimum monthly charge plus all water usage in excess of the minimum.  To terminate the contractual arrangement, a lump sum payment would be required or the 5 year term would have to expire. For a printable form, please click here. 


WHAT IS AN EASEMENT?

An easement is signed by each applicant requesting water service.  The easement grants/conveys right of way for the District to construct the rural water pipeline on your property.  This easement is limited to an area 30 feet wide, the centerline being the rural pipeline installed on the private property.  This easement provides the District access to the new pipeline in the future for necessary repairs and maintenance.
HOW DO YOU DETERMINE A NEW PROJECT AREA?

New construction projects are designed with 100% of the existing households in the project.  Before construction for these projects can begin, there must be a minimum 75% of the households signed up for connection to the District.  Once a 75% signup has been received, the District will conduct a preliminary engineering study to determine project feasibility.  This study includes overall project costs and obtainable funding and environmental and State construction permit requirements.

HOW DO YOU DETERMINE WHERE YOU ARE GOING TO PUT A WATER DISTRIBUTION LINE OR METER PIT?

The waterline is installed on private property 10 to 15 feet inside from the State or County public right of way fence line.  The meter pit will be placed with the property owner's discretion within 20 feet of the land owner's driveway and 20 feet from the right of way fence line.
The Southwest RWD maintains all the rural water lines and meter pits.  The customers private water line connection point is at the discharge side of the meter pit.  The customer maintains all of their private waterlines and is responsible for all water that is metered.



WHAT IS THE MINIMUM MONTHLY CHARGE?
The water rates are established by the Board of Directors and U.S.D.A. Rural Development.  The minimum monthly charge is based on the amortized cost of the construction project. In addition, rates must cover the operating and maintenance cost.  There is a minimum monthly charge to the Member for each month water is available from the District to the delivery point.  The minimum monthly charge entitles the member to receive the contractual gallon amount which is to be used during each month, but not to be cumulative or used as a credit against any monthly charges.  The average usage per person is 1250 gallons per month.  A family of 4 would have an average usage of 5,000 gallons per month.  Of course, average usage will vary with personal habits, and may exceed or be less than this average.
WHY AM I REQUIRED TO PAY A MONTHLY MINIMUM?

A loan is taken out to fund each project.  These loans are set up on a 40 year term.  With each loan there is a Letter of Conditions.  This Letter of Conditions states that repayment of the loan will be based off of minimum monthly payments and that minimum payments will be due once water becomes available.  At the end of 40 years this loan is paid off.  At that time minimum payments go towards a capital fund for the replacement of the system.

CAN I GET WATER SERVICE IF THE INITIAL PROJECT IS ALREADY COMPLETED IN MY AREA?

Water service in areas where the initial project has been completed and water service is in operation will be determined in the following manner:  The property owner shall pay the current non-refundable connection fee plus the cost of materials and installation.

SOUTHWEST REGIONAL WATER DISTRICT