Belize Water Services (BWS) provides water service to all municipalities and over 30 villages located throughout the country. BWS also provides central sewer service to customers in Belize City, Belmopan, and Ambergris Caye/San Pedro. In the next five years, BWS is planning to expand sewer service to the resort island of Caye Caulker. BWS engaged Raftelis to create a customized rate tariff plan over the full five-year tariff review period and build a forecast model for an additional five-year period.
Raftelis engaged the BWS Board at the project initiation to identify key financial and pricing objectives prior to model developments. A detailed 10-year financial and rate model was developed for BWS including both a cash-needs and utility (regulatory) basis. The model included cost elements by BWS service area and allocations between water and sewer services. Raftelis worked with BWS management and the BWS Board on options and funding scenarios. The BWS Board settled on a capital improvement plan scenario that balanced expansion of service and system replacement with affordability through small predicable tariff adjustments. Certain tariff structure changes were also developed to promote affordability and simplify the existing structure. The plan was documented in a tariff filing submitted and presented to the PUC. Raftelis assisted in various interrogatories with the PUC. While the proposed tariffs have not yet been approved, the PUC has indicated it will consider tariff changes in the future.