Chicago Water Bills

City of Chicago Not-For-Profit Water Fee Exemption

Conserve - Save - Preserve

Chicago Conservation Partnership
Water Conservation Clinic

Tuesday, October 21, 2014
8:30 AM – 11:00 AM
St. Francis de Sales High School
10155 S. Ewing Ave.
Chicago, IL 60617


6/6/14 UPDATE: The City of Chicago has sent out the revised water and sewer bills for 2012. You should receive a letter for each water account at your location. Please forward the letter to 312.534.8392 (fax) or PLEASE DO NOT MAKE A PAYMENT. The Real Estate Office will make a payment on behalf of all Archdiocese parishes and schools in the City of Chicago and will bill you for your portion.

The new water fee exemption ordinance categorizes not‐for‐profit organizations (NFPs) into one of 4 tiers based on their annual assets:

  • Less than $1M = 100% exemption
  • Greater than $1M but less than $10M = 60% exemption
  • Greater than $10M but less than $250M = 25% exemption
  • Greater than $250M = No exemption

The Real Estate Department has completed the application for exemption on behalf of Archdiocese parishes and schools. If an Archdiocesan parish or school has over $1M in assets annually, the remaining water bill balance will be the parish or school's responsibility. The City of Chicago Department of Water Management (DWM) will apply the correct discount to water bills.

At this time, please do not make any water bill payments. Call Jennifer Shankie at 312.534.8791 with water bill questions. The Real Estate Department will advise parishes and schools when they should begin paying water bills.

Water Meters

school has non‐metered water accounts, please contact Jennifer Shankie at 312.534.8791 immediately. The Real
Estate and Facilities & Construction Departments will work with Archdiocesan parishes and schools to arrange
the installation of the water meter.

Sewer Fees

Water bills are composed of 2 fees: water and sewer. There is a $500 semi‐annual sewer fee waiver available to NFPs under the ordinance. This waiver is automatically applied to the sewer bills for qualified NFPs. Any sewer fees over $500 in a six‐month period will be owed by the NFP. Therefore, it is in the best interest of NFPs to implement a conservation plan as soon as possible in an effort to keep sewer bills under $500 in a six‐month period. Link to City of Chicago water and sewer rates

Water Conservation

As a condition to receiving the exemption, each NFP must complete and submit an agreement to implement a water conservation plan. The Real Estate and Facilities & Construction Departments are working with the City of Chicago Department of Water Management to draft a conservation plan. The Real Estate Department will advise parishes and schools when the conservation plan is available and, if necessary, will help you implement the plan.

2012 Bills

Under the agreement with the City, NFPs will be charged for water and sewer for Jan. – Dec. 2012. THESE REVISED BILLS MUST BE PAID REGARDLESS OF YOUR CHARITABLE STATUS AT THE TIME OF RECEIPT. When you receive your bill(s) for 2012, please forward them to Jennifer Shankie via fax to 312.534.8392 or via email to The Real Estate Department will make a payment on your behalf and bill you accordingly.

Changes to Fee Waivers

In addition to removing the water fee exemption, the 2012 City of Chicago budget also included changes to other fee waivers available to NFPs. The list of changes is attached. Parishes and schools are responsible for these charges. Link to Fee Waiver Facts.

If you have questions, please contact Jennifer Shankie in the Archdiocese Real Estate Department at 312.534.8791.