LADWP board approves water rate increases

105437 full
105437 full

The board overseeing the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power on Tuesday approved higher water rates meant to incentivize conservation.

The DWP's new rates follow a sliding scale of increases, depending on how much water a customer uses.

Those who use the least, pay the smallest increase — less than 60 cents a month in the first year. Similar increases would be added each year. By the end of five years, water-wise customers would pay about $3 more per month.

Typical water users would see a $12-per-month increase by the end of five years. About $50 more would be added to the monthly bills of the heaviest water users by 2020.

City officials said the increases will bring $330 million in new annual revenue that can be used to fix the city's deteriorating pipes.

"The risk of not passing this increase is substantially greater than any risk of passing it," said board president Mel Levine in a prepared statement.

The new water rates don't kick in until the City Council also votes its approval, but expect them to show up in your bill by about April.

Electricity rates are also slated for an increase. But the Independent Ratepayer Advocate had not yet submitted its report on those proposed rates, so the DWP board decided to wait. They will probably come up in January.

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