Los Angeles water and power users would see their rates increase 2.4 percent to 5.4 percent annually for five years under a proposal unveiled by Department of Water and Power officials Wednesday.
The plan was presented to the Los Angeles Board of Water and Power Commissioners, with officials saying the rate increases are needed to replace aging infrastructure, further water and energy conservation goals and improve customer service.
DWP officials estimated that the typical residential water and power customer would face a 3.4 percent increase, which translates to paying an additional $4.75 a month, under the proposed hikes.
But customers could see increases of as little as 2.4 percent, a roughly $1.95 per month hike, or as high as 5.4 percent, which is about $17.64 per month, depending on usage.
DWP officials tried to make the case today for the rate hikes, saying they have worked to save $467 million through reductions in labor and other costs.
In order to keep up with rising power and water costs over the next five years, DWP would need to bring in an additional $900 million for its power service, and $230 million for its water service, officials said.
Commission President Mel Levine said this is just the start of conversations about the rates, and there will be outreach efforts over the next several months.
“I anticipate this will indeed be a dialogue involving both informing customers and most importantly listening to feedback from these important stakeholders and from the community,” he said.
The discussion will also involve the City Council and Mayor Eric Garcetti, the ultimate decision-makers in whether the rate hikes are adopted, Levine said.
— City News Service