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Your Dollars at Work

The City of San Diego's Public Utilities Department recognizes the importance of its responsibility with the money you pay for water and sewer service.

Between 85% and 90% of our drinking water has to be imported, and much of the money you pay on your Public Utilities bill goes toward the purchase of water. The Department treats and delivers approximately 173 million gallons of water each day. Water is an expensive resource that must be transported and properly treated to make sure it is safe and healthful, and meets all state and federal regulations.

It is also vitally important to the health and well-being of San Diego that we safely collect, treat and dispose of approximately 164 million gallons of sewage every day. At the same time, we protect our ocean water quality, supplement our limited water supply, and meet federal standards at the lowest possible cost.

The City of San Diego has very complex water and sewer systems (PDF), and the Public Utilities Department continues to look for ways to reduce costs and improve efficiency, including streamlining services and consistently reviewing our processes to make sure we are doing the best job possible.

Each year the Public Utilities Department's budget is analyzed in public City Council meetings and is available for public review. Also, the Independent Rates Oversight Committee holds monthly public meetings and advises the City regarding the department's management, expenditures and services. The Committee also assists in tracking and reviewing the use of rate proceeds to advance the infrastructure improvements.

Below are details about what your Public Utilities Department is doing to be more efficient and cost effective.