Understanding Your Redesigned Residential Bill

A PWP Bill


A: Account Information
An inset of the bill showing account number, customer name, bill date and service address

Here, you’ll find the new 10-digit PWP Account #, which has been changed as a result of PWP’s new system upgrade.  This section also includes the Bill Date, which is the date the bill was issued and mailed, the Customer Name, and Service Address.


B: Balances

The Previous Balance shows what was charged in the previous bill. The Payment(s) Received shows applicable payments made since the last bill, and Unpaid Balance shows what, if any, is owed after receiving payment. New Charges are what the current bill reflects, and the New Charges Due date shows when those new charges are due. If a customer has an Unpaid Balance, that must be paid as soon as possible. The Total Amount Due is the total that is owed to PWP, which includes the sum of the Unpaid Balance and New Charges.


C: Bill Summary

These items detail additional charges and credits for each utility type such as: starting a new account, restoring service after shutoff, returned check handling, net metering credits for solar customers, etc. Eligible customers who are enrolled in PWP’s bill payment assistance programs will also see credits or refunds here.

They also include the following taxes:

The Public Benefit Charge (PBC), which is a state-mandated fee to fund assistance programs, energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. More information is available here.

The State Environmental Surcharge, is collected by the State of California and provides revenue for site remediation, technology programs, administration, and implementation of cleanup programs.

The Underground Surtax is collected by the City of Pasadena to place overhead power lines underground.

The Utility Users Tax is collected by the City of Pasadena to fund emergency services, public safety, recreation, libraries and other programs.


D: Electric Charges

This is your electric service bill in detail, including your current rate, meter number, previous and current meter readings and how much electricity you used this period, in kilowatt hours (KWH). A KWH is one 100-Watt light bulb burning for 10 hours.

Your electricity rate is made up of five line items:

  1. The Customer Charge is a flat fee on every bill that covers billing metering, customer service and PWP’s call center. It doesn’t change no matter how much energy you use.
  2. The Grid Access Fee is a monthly, fixed fee that helps recover the cost to provide/operate the distribution and generation infrastructure, and related core services that are essential to provide electric reliability. The Residential Grid Access Charge is a flat fee of $4.50 per month; for customers who are billed bi-monthly, the charge will appear as $9.00 on each bill.
  3. The Distribution Charge recovers the cost of delivering electricity from our receiving station at the edge of the City to you. It includes operation and maintenance, capital investment and debt service. Residential distribution rates are tiered depending on how much energy you use. The more energy you use per month, the higher the rate for subsequent tiers.
  4. The Energy Charge recovers the cost to generate and procure electricity.
  5. The Transmission Charge recovers the cost of delivering electricity from our external energy supply sources to our receiving station.

E: Water Charges
An inset of the water section of a PWP bill

This is your water service bill in detail, including your current rate, meter number, previous and current meter readings and how much water you used in hundred cubic feet (HCF). Each HCF equals 748 gallons. Your water rate is structured in two ways:

  1. The Fixed Charge is a fixed fee, based on your water meter size, that recovers the costs of distribution, billing, metering, customer service, and a portion of water system improvements.
  2. The Variable Charge is a 3-tiered rate structure based on the amount of water used during the billing period. Calculated based on consumption; the less you use, the lower your charge based on number of units specified in each tier. It covers water supply, treatment, and testing, as well as a portion of water system improvements. To view tiers and current charges, click here to view the current rate card.

In Multi-Family Residential (MFR) dwellings, this section will also show the number of dwelling units. This only applies to multi-family dwellings with at least two units in the same physical location.

If implemented, a Drought Charge is a percentage increase applied to the Variable Charge. This charge covers the increased cost recovery needed during a drought, including water supply and conservation.


F: Sewer Charges

This is your Sewer Charge for this billing period. The sewer charge is a fixed charge plus a variable volumetric rate based on water usage, for the use and maintenance of the City's sanitary sewer system. The residential sewer charge for the volumetric rate is capped at 13 HCF monthly.


G: Refuse Charges

Refuse covers trash, recycling and yard waste collection and disposal through the City of Pasadena’s Public Works Department. Mixed waste (MW) is the charge for one container of mixed waste, which varies by refuse container size. The Bundle (BND) is a refuse rate that includes one selected size mixed waste container or bin, one recycling container, and one yard waste/organics container.


H: Important Messages

The Important Messages box will be used as a communication method to the customer. Examples include the holiday refuse pickup schedule or adjustments made on the customer’s account.