(Photo via Adobe Stock)

Water bill got you underwater? You may be eligible for discounts in Pittsburgh.

 
PWSA: After the Crisis
This is a guide to help residents of Pittsburgh navigate discount programs for their water and sewage bills. The information provided covers the four water and sewer utilities in the city. 
Are you eligible for help paying your water and sewage bill? The answer is yes if your income is 150% of the federal poverty level or less. The dollar figure depends on how big your household is. Consult this graphic from the Allegheny County Sanitary Authority [ALCOSAN] website.

As water bills rise, PWSA ramps up efforts to help low-income customers

The average customer in the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority [PWSA] service area spent about 2.7% of their income on water and sewage. The Environmental Protection Agency considers water and sewage bills above 4.5% to be unaffordable. But in a third of the city’s neighborhoods, at least one in every five customers was spending 10% or more of their income on water and sewage, according to PWSA’s own affordability study in 2019.

PWSA Executive Director Will Pickering photographed near the Highland 1 reservoir in Highland Park. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

As PWSA looks past the lead crisis, its new leader faces $1 billion in upgrades and rising water bills

PWSA is committed to replacing aging infrastructure, including lead service lines, to the tune of more than $1 billion over five years, a rapid increase in spending. This also means it’s begun raising rates and has proposed even more increases, even as the COVID-19 pandemic has left significant economic uncertainty in the region and required the authority to suspend water-shutoffs.