City of Brandon Addresses Water and Wastewater Deficit With Approved Rate Increase


May 14, 2024

Brandon, MB – On April 26, 2024, the Public Utilities Board (PUB) approved a strategic measure to recover the 2022 water utility operating deficit through revised water and wastewater rates. These rates, effective retroactively from April 1, 2024, will offset the deficit via a $0.033 per cubic meter rate rider over a span of 6 years and 6 months, ending in 2030. 

The approved rate will see the rate rider recovery increase from 19 cents to 22.3 cents. For an average family of four, consuming 46 cubic meters per quarter, this translates to an additional $6.07 (0.6%) on the annual water bill, or an increase of $0.51 on their monthly plan. 

To help residents in managing these costs, the City encourages enrollment in monthly water billing, which offers a 20% discount on the administrative service charge. To apply for a water payment plan, please visit onlineservices.brandon.ca/updateinfo.aspx. More information on water billing can be found at brandon.ca/water-billing-utilities


Why Did This Happen?
In 2022, the City encountered a deficit in our water utility, leading us to file a deficit application with the Public Utilities Board, as mandated by the Municipal Act. We proposed revised water and wastewater rates in July 2022. However, the approval process for the proposed rate hike took longer than we initially expected. During this transitional period, we continued to bill at the existing lower rates. As a result, our residents enjoyed savings on their water bills as we didn't generate as much revenue as we had planned. This situation is not due to overspending or mismanagement. It's simply a matter of timing - we were unable to roll out the new, higher rates as swiftly as we had hoped.

City Hall and City Council have been working tirelessly with federal and provincial partners to secure financial commitments, aiming at keeping Brandon’s costs as minimal as possible. To maintain an effective water and sewer system, the City of Brandon is required to account for previous years of deficit operations, as well as fund proper operations and necessary capital upgrades.  

The complete Board Order from the Public Utilities Board can be viewed on their website at https://pubmanitoba.ca/v1/proceedings-decisions/orders/pubs/24-orders/50-24.pdf