EFC Resources: Northeast Illinois Water and Wastewater Rates Dashboard

Northeast Illinois Water and Wastewater Rates Dashboard

Subject: Financial Data, Management, Rates
Program: Drinking Water and Wastewater
Tool type: Dashboard
Date: 05/25/2015
Version: 2013; v2
Tool: Click to run tool in browser (Flash)

This interactive Rates Dashboard is designed to assist utility managers, finance directors, Board members, state and local officials, reporters, and customers in comparing their residential water and wastewater rates against multiple characteristics, including utility finances, system size, customer base demographics, and geography. Rates data for this dashboard are drawn from the 2013 water and wastewater rates survey IISG-15-007 conducted by the Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant Program for municipal utilities in the seven-county Chicago Metropolitan area (Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will).

This Rates Dashboard was constructed as part of the Smart Management for Small Water Systems nationwide project of the Environmental Finance Center Network (EFCN). The EFCN is composed of numerous Environmental Finance Centers around the country, including the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, which created this dashboard. This dashboard was created under a cooperative agreement with the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

View a video tutorial on how to use one of the EFC's interactive rates dashboards. 

The dashboard includes residential water and/or wastewater rate structures effective as of October 1, 2013, for 224 municipal public utilities in the state of Illinois. These residential water, wastewater, or water and wastewater combined rates for Illinois, evaluated at any increment of 1,000 gallons per month of usage between zero and 15,000 gallons per month, can be compared with:

  • All other utilities in the seven-county greater Chicago area,
  • Utilities of the same size,
  • Utilities with the same water source,
  • Utilities using the same rate structure type,
  • Utilities serving communities with similar median household incomes, and
  • Utilities within 25 miles

The following measures for the selected utility are compared to key indicators or to the utilities within the selected comparison group:

  • Monthly water, wastewater, or water and wastewater combined bill for the selected consumption amount,
  • Conservation pricing signal (marginal price when going from 10,000 to 11,000 gallons per month),
  • Monthly bill as a percentage of median household income (MHI) for the community, and
  • Ratio of operating revenues to operating expenses (when available).

You can compare the monthly bill charged for the selected monthly amount of usage. You can also raise rates by up to 100% and observe the (hypothetical) effects on the utility's rates, conservation pricing signal, operating ratio, and rate affordability.

In addition, system financial health and customer demographic profiles are provided for utilities where data are available.



The dashboard is is an Adobe Flash (swf) file that should automatically run on your web browser once it is launched. The dashboard might take 20 to 40 seconds to load on your browser. If you are having trouble accessing the dashboards, try the following steps:

  1. Download the latest version of Adobe Flash Player (9.0 or later) on the browser you are using to access the dashboards (Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, etc.)
  2. If an error message appears warning about running scripts, accept the scripts to launch the dashboards.
  3. If you are still having trouble accessing the dashboard, try switching to another web browser (we recommend using Chrome or Internet Explorer). You may need to download the latest version of Adobe Flash Player again before you proceed.
  4. If you are still unable to launch the dashboard, please email David Tucker.


Project page: Utility Financial Sustainability and Rates Dashboards

Project page: Smart Management for Small Water Systems

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