Water and Sewer Rates

Water and Sewer Billing Information

Your water and sewer bills are sent out four times a year, based on quarterly readings. All revenue collected through water bills remains in a special Water Fund which supports all water related activities. No property tax money is spent to support the Water Department, or is used to pay for water treatment. The water and sewer bills have two sections.

1. Both bills have a fixed fee that is based on the size meter in your house. This covers the fixed costs of the Water and Sewer divisions -- the debt service portion.

2. The bills also have a separate charge for the amount of water you use based on your water meter readings. The more water you use, the higher both bills will be. This is called the volumetric charge, and is based on the annual operating expenses of the Water and Sewer divisions. These rates are explained below:

For the Water portion of your bill

Each quarter you are charged a base rate determined by the size of your meter, and a separate volumetric charge for the gallons of water you use - $4.04 for every 100 cubic feet of water (about 750 gallons).

For most single family homes, the base rate is $7.32. The average household in Keene uses approximately 2,500 cubic feet of water each quarter, or about 18,700 gallons. The price for that amount of water is $101. So, the average quarterly water bill for a single family house is approximately $108.36 -- or about $1.21 per day. The more water you use, the higher your water bill will be.

For the sewer portion of your bill

There is no separate sewer meter, the volume of water discharged to the sewer is based on the water meter reading. Each quarter you are charged a base rate determined by the size of your water meter, and a separate volumetric charge for the gallons of water you discharge - $5.76 for every 100 cubic feet of water (about 750 gallons).

For most single family homes, the sewer base rate is $36.75. The average household in Keene discharges approximately 2,500 cubic feet of water each quarter, or about 18,700 gallons. The charge for that volume is $144. So, the average sewer bill for a single family house is approximately $180.75 -- or about $2.01 per day. The more water you use, the higher your sewer bill will be. There is no summer discount rate.

Where to pay the bill

The bill can be paid in person at the Tax Collector's Office on the first floor of City Hall, or mailed to 3 Washington Street, Keene, NH 03431.

Repairs

Water - The owner of the property is responsible for the water bill, and any repairs to the water meter, or water lines on the property. If there is a water leak or other poroblem, the Public Works Department may be able to perform the repair and send a bill, or you may hire a private contractor as long as the work meets the City of Keene's minimum engineering standards.

You are responsible for any repairs made on your water service from your property line or curb stop to your water meter, as well as inside of your house. The City is responsible for repairs from your property line or curb stop to the main in the street.

Sewer - You are responsible for any repairs to your sewer service from where it connects to the main in the street all the way to the inside of your house. This includes any blockages in your sewer line. The City is responsible for the repair and maintenance of the mains in the street.  

Sewer Backups

To prevent sewage from backing up in your basement when there is a problem with your service, (off the main in the street) a device called a backwater valve is required for all plumbing fixtures that are located below the level of the sewer main in the street. This generally means that if you have a bathroom, sink, or washing machine in your basement, you should have a backwater valve installed. If you don't know if you have or need this valve, you should contact a plumber.

Emergencies

Water and Sewer Division personnel are on call 24 hours a day to respond to emergencies, but the homeowner may be billed for the service.

  • During working hours, call the Public Works Department at 352-6550.
  • In an after hours emergency, call the Keene Police Department at 352-2222.
  • For Water/Sewer billing concerns/questions: 603-352-3239.