Sewer Rate Increase

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Customers on City sewer service will see a planned rate increase beginning July 1, 2024, in order to continue improving the City’s aging sewer system and to remain in compliance with federal Clean Water Act regulations.

The City of South Gate held a Public Hearing as part of the Proposition 218 requirements and approved a 5-year sewer rate adjustment.  The annual rate increases are (July 1st of each year beginning in 2024 of 100%, 10%, 10%, 5%, and 2%).

The new rates are required to cover the actual cost to maintain the City’s aging sewer system. The City had not increased rates since 2010 but even with the full 5 year increase completed South Gate will still have the 3rd lowest sewer rates in the South LA Region.

Why is the City of South Gate proposing a sewer rate increase?

The City is proposing the rate increase to fund essential repairs, maintenance, upgrades, and expansions to the sewer system. These improvements are aimed at maintaining the integrity of the infrastructure, meeting state and federal regulations, and ensuring the long-term viability of the system.

This rate increase also seeks to eliminate the impact to the General Fund. Impacts to the General Fund could impact City services funded by the General Fund such as public safety (SGPD), recreation (Parks) and other essential public services.

Why does the city need the funds from the sewer rate increase?

The city's sewer system, like any other infrastructure, undergoes wear and tear over time. Maintenance and repairs are continuous needs. Additionally, to comply with evolving environmental and health safety standards, system upgrades are essential. The funds generated from the sewer rate increase will ensure that South Gate can address these needs promptly without compromising service quality or safety standards.

Raising these funds would eliminate the impact to the General Fund, the deficit of which is expected to grow to $2M by FY 26/27. It will also provide funding for capital improvements (equipment and infrastructure), operations, and to fund a reserve balance for emergencies which does not currently exist.

Has the City explored other avenues for funding before proposing this increase?

Absolutely. The city has actively pursued multiple sources of funding, including previous grants and state and federal assistance.. While $4 Million has been secured and incorporated to reduce the amount of the proposed sewer rate increases, they only cover a portion of the total costs required to maintain and upgrade the sewer infrastructure adequately. Further they were insufficient to eliminate the sewer fund deficit and impact to the General Fund. Funding through other funding avenues is anticipated to be limited in the foreseeable future therefore the deficit will continue to be funded by the General Fund therefore limiting funding for other essential services.

Why can't the City use grant money for the sewer system?

While grants provide valuable financial assistance, they often come with stipulations on how they can be used. Some grants may be specifically for other city projects or initiatives and cannot be redirected to the sewer system. Moreover, grants typically cover a fraction of the costs, leaving the city to find additional resources to fund the entirety of a project.

Do residents of South Gate pay the highest sewer rates in the area?

No, residents of South Gate do not pay the highest sewer rates in the region. It's essential to compare the rates across different cities by considering the quality of service, the age and condition of the infrastructure, and other unique challenges each municipality might face.

As a part of the Sewer Rate Study, the City Council was presented a survey of comparative cities, including Redondo Beach, Long Beach, Pomona, Torrance, Norwalk, Lynwood, Whittier, and Manhattan Beach. The survey results demonstrated that South Gate residents paid the lowest rates of all of the cities.

When analyzed in this manner, South Gate's rates are competitive and reflect the City's commitment to providing a safe and efficient sewer system without overburdening its residents.

How does South Gate's sewer rate compare with neighboring cities?

While rates can fluctuate and vary based on numerous factors, South Gate remains committed to keeping its rates as affordable as possible. Regular comparisons are made with neighboring cities to ensure that the rates charged are in line with regional averages and that residents receive value for their money.

Chart comparing South Gate Sewer Rates with nearby cities


For more information, visit, call (800) 676-7516 or email