Skip to main content

Payment Plans & Bill Assistance

Seattle City Light is disconnecting customers for non-payment. City Light has flexible payment plans available to all customers. For income-eligible residential customers, we have bill assistance programs available, including emergency bill assistance and the Utility Discount Program. If your electricity has been disconnected, call (206) 684-3000 Monday – Friday 7:30 am – 6:00 pm to discuss your options.

Business Rates

Your business success depends on keeping operational costs low. Our goal is to keep electricity rates affordable. As a not-for-profit utility, the rate you pay goes only toward the carbon neutral electricity that you use, and to cover utility operations that ensure the delivery of reliable, safe, equitable, and green energy.

Current Rates

City Light provides affordable rates for carbon-neutral electricity, primarily generated from carbon-free hydroelectricity.

To understand your rates, find the applicable rate chart below based on the location and maximum demand (in kW) of your business. Maximum demand is the range into which more than half of your normal billings fall. Classification of new customers will be based on City Light's estimate of maximum demand in the current year.

Maximum demand places your business in one of four categories:

Small Medium Large High Demand
<50 kW 50-999 kW 1,000-9,999 kW 10,000+ kW

"Peak" is defined as the period Monday through Saturday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., excluding New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

City of Seattle ("C")
Small Medium Large High Demand
Per kWh $0.1103 $0.0831 Peak $0.0965 Peak $0.0902
Off-Peak $0.0603 Off-Peak $0.0564
Per kW - $4.74 Peak $4.58 Peak $4.58
Off-Peak $0.29 Off-Peak $0.29
Base service charge per day $0.22 $0.88 $11.00 $57.88
Minimum bill per meter per day $0.42 $1.33 $31.47 $96.97
Transformer Investment per kW $0.29

Downtown Network ("D")
Small Medium Large
Per kWh $0.1103 $0.0972 Peak $0.1070
Off-Peak $0.0669
Per kW - $10.81 Peak $9.80
Off-Peak $0.29
Base service charge per day $0.22 $0.88 $11.00
Minimum bill per meter per day $0.42 $1.33 $31.47
Transformer Investment per kW $0.29

Normandy Park ("N")
Small
Per kWh $0.1149
Base service charge per day $0.24
Minimum bill per meter per day $0.45
Transformer Investment per kW $0.31

Burien ("B")
SeaTac ("E")
Shoreline ("H")
Unincorporated King County ("K")
Small Medium Large
Per kWh $0.1166 $0.0897 Peak $0.1042
Off-Peak $0.0651
Per kW - $5.12 Peak $4.95
Off-Peak $0.31
Base service charge per day $0.25 $0.95 $11.88
Minimum bill per meter per day $0.45 $1.43 $33.99
Transformer Investment per kW $0.31

Lake Forest Park ("L")
Small Medium Large
Per kWh $0.1167 $0.0898 Peak $0.1043
Off-Peak $0.0651
Per kW - $5.12 Peak $4.95
Off-Peak $0.31
Base service charge per day $0.25 $0.95 $11.88
Minimum bill per meter per day $0.45 $1.43 $34.00
Transformer Investment per kW $0.31

Tukwila ("T")
Small Medium Large High Demand
Per kWh $0.1160 $0.0894 Peak $0.1038 Peak $0.0971
Off-Peak $0.0649 Off-Peak $0.0607
Per kW - $5.10 Peak $4.93 Peak $4.93
Off-Peak $0.31 Off-Peak $0.31
Base service charge per day $0.25 $0.95 $11.83 $62.34
Minimum bill per meter per day $0.45 $1.43 $33.91 $104.60
Transformer Investment per kW $0.31

Renton ("S")
Small Medium Large
Per kWh $0.1080 $0.0831 Peak $0.0965
Off-Peak $0.0603
Per kW - $4.74 Peak $4.58
Off-Peak $0.29
Base service charge per day $0.23 $0.88 $11.00
Minimum bill per meter per day $0.42 $1.33 $31.47
Transformer Investment per kW $0.29

Undergrounding Rates

Burien and Shoreline elected to underground distribution lines on some of their arterial streets. Instead of the jurisdiction paying for the work upfront, the undergrounding cost is recovered from all customers in that jurisdiction via a kWh undergrounding charge according to the table below:

Burien Undergrounding Rates
First Ave South 1 per kWh $0.0037
First Ave South 2 per kWh $0.0013

Shoreline Undergrounding Rates
North City per kWh $0.0007
Aurora 1 per kWh $0.0017
Aurora 2 per kWh $0.0018
Aurora 3A per kWh $0.0005
Aurora 3B per kWh $0.0022

Other Charges and Credits

Business rates may also include the following charges or credits:

  • Power factor charge: $0.0015/kVarh

What's the Difference Between kW and kWh?

It's the difference between demand (kW) - measuring the maximum use of electricity at a given point in time - and consumption (kWh) - measuring the flow of electricity over an hour.

How Are Rates Designed?

Rates are driven by the cost of providing electricity to our customers, including costs for production, delivery, and customer services, while also adhering to city, state and federal government regulations and requirements. Rates are generally approved by the Seattle City Council every two years. Business rates are determined by three factors: class, structure, and element.

Your rate class is based on your maximum demand (kW) per month. Your rate class and service location are noted under the "Rate Code" section of your bill. Rate code key:

Size
Max. Monthly Demand Class Code
Fewer than 50 kW Small General Service SM
50 - 999 kW Medium General Service MD
1,000 - 9,999 kW Large General Service LG
10,000+ kW High Demand General Service HD

Location
Class Code
Burien B
City of Seattle C
Downtown Network D
SeaTac E
Shoreline H
Unincorporated King County K
Lake Forest Park L
Normandy Park N
Renton S
Tukwila T

The rate structure indicates whether it is a flat rate, block rate, or based on time of use. The rate structure is displayed on your bill under "Peak." 

  • Flat rate: The charge for electricity use is the same price per kWh regardless of time or quantity. Flat rates are typical for small and medium general service customers. 
  • Block rate: The price of electricity changes at different levels of consumption. 
  • Time of use: Prices vary by time of day, with higher prices for usage during peak demand periods such as early evening. Time-of-use rates are for large and high-demand general service customers. 

Elements include types of energy used, demand for energy, and other charges to cover the cost of service.

  • Unit charge: That portion of a customer's bill based on the electric energy (kWh) consumed. 
  • Demand charge: That portion of a customer's bill based on the peak electricity demanded. 
  • Power factor penalty charge: The measure of how effectively power is being used at the service location. The penalty charge is only assessed if the power factor is less than 97%. This is typically only used for industrial facilities using large electric equipment that place a heavier than normal drain on the power source.
  • Transformer investment discount: This discount is for primary metering customers who own their own transformers. The transformer distributes power on the last leg of the trip to your business for high voltage transmission. 

Other Business Rates

See our rates below for lighting; duct, vault, and pole attachment rental; and Reserved Distribution Capacity (RDC).

Lights
Residential Lights (R)
Residential LED $11.96 per month
Arterial Lights (A)
Arterial HPS/other $31.56 per month
Arterial LED $19.54 per month
Floodlights (F)
Floodlights HPS $22.66 per month
Decorative, Pedestrian and Miscellaneous Lights (D)
Decorative HPS/other $34.96 per month
Decorative LED $16.38 per month
Customer Owned, Department Maintained (M)
Monthly Bi-Monthly
HPS <200 W $19.62 $39.23
HPS 200 W - 299 W $24.07 $48.15
HPS >300 W $29.12 $58.24
LED <50 W $5.49 $10.99
LED >50 W $8.56 $17.13
Customer Owned, Customer Maintained (E)
Monthly Bi-Monthly
HPS <150 W $5.04 $10.07
HPS >150 W $8.84 $17.67
LED <150 W $3.15 $6.30
LED >150 W $7.00 $13.99

Rentals
Duct Rental
Per duct-foot $13.04 per year
Per duct-foot-innerduct in a rented duct $13.04 per year
Vault Rental
Per square foot of wall space $32.58 per year
Per square foot of ceiling space $13.04 per year
Pole Attachment Rental
Within the Communication Space
Per pole owned solely by City Light $38.80 per year
Per pole owned by City Light + 1 other party $19.40 per year
Per pole owned by City Light + 2 other parties $12.93 per year
Below the Communication Space
Per pole owned solely by City Light $73.72 per year
Per pole owned by City Light + 1 other party $36.86 per year
Per pole owned by City Light + 2 other parties $24.57 per year

Reserved Distribution Capacity (RDC)
Per kW of monthly maximum $0.47

Have questions about City Light rates? Need help with forecasting or analysis?

Contact us for more information about rates or help analyzing your bill.

City Light

Debra Smith, General Manager and CEO
Address: 700 5th Ave, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 34023, Seattle, WA, 98124-4023
Phone: (206) 684-3000
SCL_ExternalComms@seattle.gov

Seattle City Light was created by the citizens of Seattle in 1902 to provide affordable, reliable, and environmentally responsible electric power to the City of Seattle and neighboring suburbs.