2023 Utility Rate Update

Note: The Bismarck City Commission approved water utility rate updates during its April 25 regular commission meeting. No more information is being added to this page, but it will be kept online to serve as a history of how we got to this point. For existing water utility rate content, visit the Utility Billing Rate Schedule 2023 page

Water Photo


The City of Bismarck is taking a look at how its drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater utility rates are designed. Part of this process includes examining different water utility rate design options. These design options highlight different approaches that can create variable water utility rate formulas. As an example, one formula may emphasize transparency as it is a flat rate per unit used for all property types across the board, allowing the public to easily calculate the monthly cost. Another example is a formula that may emphasize proportional equity, with tiered rates relative to usage, allowing the public more control over their monthly costs. 

The contents of this page are intended to provide information about the "how and why" that goes into the water and sewer rate portions of the city's utility bill your home receives each month.  


Additional Resources

Please note that the Bismarck City Commission has indicated a preference for the fixed costs schedule as presented under Option A. Under all rate options and alternatives, seasonal sewer averaging will be applied to qualifying accounts, including multi-family and non-residential properties. 

Contact Us

If you have any specific questions regarding the above page, please email us at utilitybill@bismarcknd.gov

Supplemental Resources

Note: The resources in the below section may have been altered as conversations about the Water Utility Rates have evolved and may not be the most up-to-date information. However, the evolution of this conversation was only possible through considering some of this information and we would feel remiss if we did not continue to include it in the information available to the public.

December 13, 2022, City Commission Utility Rate Presentation

This video includes the presentation from Stantec to the City Commission during its December 13, 2022, meeting. Along with the presentation, the video includes Commissioner discussion and some input from the public. 

December 27, 2022, Utility Water Rate Update Communications Plan Presentation

City of Bismarck Communications Specialist Kalen Ost presents the water utility rate communications plan to the City Commission during its meeting on December 27, 2022.