San Francisco Water, Power and Sewer's Community Assistance Program (CAP) has introduced new participation requirements. The ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ listed below can help answer many common questions about the new program. If you need further assistance, please contact the Customer Service Bureau for more information at (415) 551-3000.
Q: What documentation do I need to submit as proof of income?
A: There are now 3 ways to document proof of income.
- Option 1: If you currently receive CalWorks, CalFresh, or Medi-Cal benefits from San Francisco Human Services Agency (HSA) you can give permission for HSA to share your income information.
- Option 2: A signed copy of the most recent Federal Tax Return(s) for all income-earning members of my household. Please submit all pages of the Tax Return. All household members without income should be listed as dependents on the Federal Tax Return of another household member; if not listed, submit required documents specified in Option 3.
- Option 3: Income documentation and proof of occupancy for each member of my household because your Federal Tax Return is NOT available. Income Documentation may include: 2 consecutive paycheck stubs; 2 consecutive copies of Social Security or SSI checks; W-2 forms; Social Security benefit statement; unemployment benefits statement. Proof of Occupancy may include: recurring bills, bank statements, or other correspondence that includes the name of the household member and the service address of the water bill. List which documents you are submitting for each household member listed on your application.
Q: What is considered household income?
A: Household income is defined as the combined gross income of ALL persons who live in the household, whether taxable or non-taxable. Gross income includes, but is not limited to the total income from: wages, salaries, pensions, unemployment benefits, disability payments, workers compensation, profit from self- employment (IRS Form 1040 Schedule C), child or spousal support, interest or dividends from savings accounts, stocks, bonds retirement accounts, rent or royalty income, cash income or gifts, scholarships, grants, or other aid used for living expenses, insurance or legal settlements, Social Security, SSI, SSP, food stamps, or TANF (AFDC).
Q: When will I start receiving my CAP discount?
A:The CAP discount will be included in your summary of charges within one to two billing cycles after you have:
Received a letter from San Francisco Water, Power and Sewer stating your household meets the program requirements and that all required verification of household income and occupancy have been received.
To save water, and save money, all CAP participants are encouraged to participate in out Water-Wise Evaluation Program
Q: I’m a tenant. Do I need my landlord’s permission to participate in your programs?
A: No. The Water Wise evaluation provides education and water conservation resources that do not require the property owner’s permission to participate. If your household is eligible for replacement of plumbing devices or toilets, San Francisco Water, Power and Sewer will provide you with documentation to request the property owner/manager’s permission. In many cases the evaluation will help identify plumbing inefficiencies that will be the responsibility of the property owner to repair and can help save you money on water and wastewater bills.
Q: What happens at the Water-Wise evaluation?
A: The Water-Wise evaluation is one of our most popular programs, providing a free on-site consultation from a water efficiency expert. A water conservation specialist will walk through your home with you, providing information on how water is used and point out inefficient plumbing fixtures and leaks that can increase water bills. Evaporators will also provide free high-efficiency showerheads, faucet aerators, and replacement parts for toilets found leaking, such as flappers and fill valves if needed.
Q: Am I required to have an evaluation to complete my CAP application or to re-enroll in the program?
A: No. A Water-Wise evaluation is highly encouraged for new applicants for the CAP discount.
Many customers enjoy the evaluation as an opportunity to learn more about water conservation and further reduce water bills.
Q: Do I have to replace toilets and plumbing devices?
A: No. If your toilet qualifies to be replaced for free, you may decline the offer. Please note that homes with inefficient plumbing fixtures will continue to experience higher water bills. Did you know that toilets can account for 30% of household indoor water use? The average customer will save an additional $200 per year by replacing an older, water-guzzling toilet model.
San Francisco Water, Power and Sewer provides plumbing fixtures and devices that have been thoroughly tested and meet the highest plumbing standards.
Q: Will I have to re-enroll in CAP
A: Yes, once you are enrolled you will be required to renew your application every 3 years. You will be sent a reminder along with an application for renewal.
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