This week, the City Council will consider a proposal to raise electricity and water rates for homes and businesses in Los Angeles. The plan would increase the typical residential customer’s monthly Department of Water and Power bill incrementally each year so that at the end of five years it would be $21 more than today. With three members present, the Energy and Environment Committee cleared the way for the full council to consider the DWP’s rate proposals at its Wednesday meeting.

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Much like with water rates, which are also projected to rise in July, the drought is the main driver. Half of the city’s electric supply comes from hydroelectric sources and with the dry spell stretching into its fifth year, The drought is even affecting the city’s wastewater operation. According to Utilities Department staff, with less water flowing through the system, there is a greater concentration of chemicals at the end source, which increases the treatment costs.

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Jesus Alvarez