You are charged for actual water usage on a monthly basis. However, a water budget is the maximum amount of water that your particular household is allowed to use. The budget is shown in tiers identifying indoor usage, outdoor (irrigable) usage, excess over budget and surcharge over 40,000 gallons. These tiers are established by your household's actual usage and are independent of your neighbors. If you use more than your water budget, additional rates apply. A water budget has been shown to be an effective water conservation tool.