Water bills would increase starting Jan. 1 under a budget proposal submitted Tuesday by the Department of Water and Power. The proposal calls for an increase of about 4 to 6 percent for “tier 1” customers and a 6 to 8 percent raise for “tier 2” customers.

Tier 1 customers are typically residential and use no more than roughly 124 hundred cubic feet of water. Those who exceed the “tier 1” budget are charged “tier 2” rates.

The proposed rate hike for water comes on top of an increase of electrical rates of six-tenths of a cent per kilowatt hour. Further raises of one-tenth of a cent per kilowatt hour are under consideration for October and January and April of next year.

The new budget would help to underwrite the DWP's annual transfer to the city's general coffers — $257 million for the next fiscal year, according the Daily News' Rick Orlov. Austin Beutner, the Department of Water and Power's interim general said that the increases are necessary to help the Department of Water and Power comply with state and industry requirements.

According to Commissioner Jonathan Parfrey, more rate hikes will be necessary in the future in order to achieve Mayor Villaraigosa's goal to have 20 percent of the city's energy come from renewable resources. Of course, that motive has been questioned in the past as a way to sell rate hikes to L.A. citizens.

The DWP budget is expected to go to the City Council this week.

Click here for more coverage on the DWP and its rate hikes.

-With reporting from City News Service. Got news? Email us.

LA Weekly