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Excess Water Use (Commercial Rate Codes Only*)

*Includes businesses, multifamily complexes and irrigation taps.


Excess Water Use, previously referred to as a Raw Water Surcharge, is a fee collected when an account uses more than its annual water allotment (see terminology below).

The amount of water used over an account’s annual allotment is billed at a rate of $8.14 per 1,000 gallons of excess water use.

Options that can help lessen potential impacts and lower costs include:

1 - Reduce the account’s annual water use through efficiency and conservation projects.

2 - Increase the account’s annual water allotment by turning in water rights or paying the Cash-in-Lieu Rate (2018).

  • Water Supply Requirements – Water Supply Requirements determine how water is assigned to utility accounts for water budgeting.
  • Excess Water Use – The amount of water used in excess of the annual allotment.
  • Raw Water Surcharge – The former name for Excess Water Use on utility bills.
  • Allotment – Total volume of water that can be used by an account in a calendar year. An allotment is based on the amount of water rights turned in at the time of development or by additional water rights that have since been added.
  • Cash-in-Lieu Rate – In place of water rights, property owners can pay a cash payment per acre-foot of raw water to increase their allotment.

Excess Water Use FAQs

What is the purpose of an allotment?
Depending on the type of business, some customers use more water than others. Water allotments are based on the amount of water provided to Utilities to meet the customer’s needs. Funds collected through the excess water use fee, which are applied to water use over the allotment, provide Utilities the ability to acquire additional water supplies if a customer uses more water than their allotment.

How are allotments determined?
Allotments are determined at the time of development and are based on use and tap size.

Why was there an increase in the excess water use fee?
The excess water use fee, previously referred to as a Raw Water Surcharge, is based on the cost of purchasing additional water supplies, which has increased significantly in recent years. An excess water use fee of $8.14 per 1,000 gallons will be assessed on a customer’s monthly water bill when an account uses more water in a calendar year than the gallons allotted.

How do I determine what my allotment is?
For more information, call Utilities Customer Accounts at 970-416-4268.

How do I determine if I need to increase my allotment?
Fort Collins Utilities can determine if an increase to an assigned allotment is needed or if a customer can improve their water efficiency to use less than their assigned allotment. Contact Utilities Water Conservation for more information about water efficiency at 970-416-4371.

How can I increase my allotment?
First, contact Utilities Water Conservation at 970-416-4371 to identify if it is necessary to increase the allotment.

If it’s determined that an allotment increase is needed, it can be done in one of three ways:

  1. Water rights (stock) acceptable to the City based on current conversion factors
  2. City of Fort Collins water certificates
  3. Cash-in-lieu of water rights

Contact Utilities Customer Accounts for more information on these options at 970-416-4268.

What is an acre-foot?
An acre-foot is equivalent to 325,851 gallons.
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For questions, please contact Utilities' Customer Accounts at 970-416-4268 or dXRpbGl0aWVzY3VzdG9tZXJhY2NvdW50c0BmY2dvdi5jb20=.