The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has implemented rate adjustments on water usage, a move that will lead to higher bills for some customers, according to the utility.
The change went into effect on Jan. 1 and primarily impacts residential customers who are the highest water users, DWP officials said in a Wednesday news release.
The utility uses a four-tiered pricing structure based on usage to determine the rates a customer pays for water.
For a typical resident in tiers 1 and 2, the monthly cost for water will be about the same as it was in 2021, provided their usage doesn’t change this year.
The increase kicks in at Tier 3, where the cost of one hundred cubic feet — approximately 748 gallons — of water will rise from $9.192 to $10.436, the release stated.
For those in Tier 4, the new rate is $12.794 per one hundred cubic feet of water, which represents an increase of $3.60 over the prior cost. Tier 4 customers represent DWP’s highest water users, the utility said.
Customers were notified of the change via a special rate notice included in their bill. Those in tiers 3 and 4 will receive a separate letter that details “ways they can take action today to conserve water through conservation methods and available rebates and programs,” the release stated.
More information on that can be found here.
Despite an exceptionally rainy December, California is not out of the woods yet in terms of the state’s ongoing drought, even as conditions improved somewhat at the end of last month. The precipitation pulled most of L.A. County out of the “extreme” category but “moderate” drought persists.
“The drought conditions the City is facing are serious despite recent wet conditions,” Anselmo Collins, the senior assistant general manager, said in a news release. “As we urge Angelenos to step up their conservation efforts, the water rate changes further encourage and incentivize water conservation while ensuring rates remain relatively the same for customers who use the least amount of water.”
Additionally, DWP reminded customers of an ordinance from the city that currently limits outdoor watering. Residents can use sprinklers three days a week — the days depend on the person’s address — before 9 a.m. or after 4 p.m., and only up to 8 minutes per station.
On top of that, the State Water Resources Control Board approved new restrictions this week on water usage, though they aren’t expected to go into effect until at least late January. Under the rules, residents won’t be able to water their lawns for 48 hours after a storm and their sprinklers can’t flow onto the sidewalk, the Associated Press reported.
Those who run afoul of the state’s regulations could face a fine of $500 per day.