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Water-Related Fees: Public Health Service, Consolidated Water Quality, and Water Use Assessment Fees

Public Health Service Fee structure, types of public water systems subject to the fee, and when it's due. More on the Consolidated Water Quality Fee for individual wastewater permit holders, and exemptions, fee rates, and timeline for the Water Use Assessment Fee.

Public Health Service Fee

The Public Health Service Fee is collected from operators of public drinking water systems, and is assessed based on the total number of connections served by the system. [Title 30, Texas Administrative Code (30 TAC), Subsection 290.51(a)]

How much is the fee?

  • For a system with fewer than 25 connections, the fee will be an amount up to a maximum of $200;
  • For systems with 25 - 160 connections, the fee will be an amount up to a maximum of $300; and
  • For a system with greater than or equal to 161 connections, the fee will be an amount up to a maximum of $4.00 per connection.

The fee increased effective June 3, 2016. This increase was approved by the TCEQ commissioners on May 11, 2015. If a rate increase is scheduled, you will be notified on your invoice documents and this website will be updated. See the fee structure table below.

Public Health Service Fee Current Structure:
If you have... Then you will pay...
fewer than 25 connections $125
between 25 and 160 connections $200
more than 160 connections $2.45 for each connection

Does my public water system need to pay this fee?

If you are a public water system of any type, including a community, transient non-community public water system, or a non-transient, non-community public water system, then you are subject to the Public Health Service Fee. An example of an account number for the Public Health Service Fee is 9xxxxxxx (a "9" followed by a 7-digit public water system ID number).

When must I pay the fee?

We mail out Public Health Service Fee bills in November of each year. You have 30 days from the billing date to pay the fee.

How do I get more information on this fee?

Please review our Public Health Service Fee regulatory guidance (RG-077).

If you have additional questions, email or call us:

Public Health Service Fee
wufees@tceq.texas.gov
512-239-4691

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Consolidated Water Fee

The Consolidated Water Quality (CWQ) Fee, as defined in 30 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Chapter 21, is assessed to wastewater permit holders on Sept. 1, that are authorized to treat or discharge wastewater into or adjacent to the waters in the state, under Texas Water Code (TWC), Chapter 26. The fee is assessed annually, and is used to pay the expenses for water quality administration and other water resource management programs of the commission.

Fees are calculated and assessed based on the following authorized limits and factors contained in each wastewater permit as of Sept. 1 of each year:

  • Flow Volume and Type (Contaminated/Uncontaminated)
  • Tradition Pollutants (TSS, NH3, BOD)
  • Toxicity Rating (1-6)
  • Stormwater
  • EPA Major/Minor Determination
  • Active/Inactive Status
  • Discharge or Retention

The minimum active fee assessed is $1,250, and $620.00 for inactive permits, with a maximum fee of $121,000 assessed in Fiscal Year 2019. A multiplier may be applied to adjust the total fee per permit, which would also adjust the total assessment for all permits under the Water Quality Fee program. The multiplier will be an amount up to a maximum of 1.75 and is reported by the executive director to the commission for each fiscal year.

Billing invoices are sent to permittees no later than Oct. 31 of each year, for a billing period of Sept. 1 through Aug. 31, with payment due 30 days from the billing invoice date. Penalties and interest will accrue on a person who fails to pay a required fee in accordance with 30 TAC Ch. 12 Payment of Fees.

How do I get more information on this fee?

When the TCEQ finalizes rates for the fiscal year, you can find that information on this webpage. If you have questions in the meantime, please email or call us:

Consolidated Water Quality Fee
oprwq@tceq.texas.gov
512-239-4671

Water Use Assessment Fee

If you hold a water right and do not fall under one of the following exemptions, then you are subject to the Water Use Assessment Fee.

Exemptions include:

  • municipal or industrial water rights directly associated with a facility that is assessed a Consolidated Water Quality fee,
  • agriculture (irrigation) water rights,
  • non-priority hydroelectric water rights for a facility with a capacity of less than 2 megawatts, and
  • consumptive authorization for less than 250 acre-feet.

Please refer to the full text of the current rule at the Secretary of State's website Exit the TCEQ [(30 TAC Subsection Section 21.3(c)].

How much is the fee?

Because of the potential variability between the data you use to calculate your fee rates and the information we have on each fee payer, we encourage you to contact us at wateruse@tceq.texas.gov to discuss your particular fee assessment.

When must I pay this fee?

An example of an account number for this fee is 06xxxxxR. If you received a bill for this fee in 2018, you will probably be billed in 2019 as well. (Bills are mailed in January of each year.)

How do I get more information?

Water Use Assessment Fee
wateruse@tceq.texas.gov
512-239-3838