Those customers did not see an increase in water rates and may have seen a decrease; however, they would still have an increase in the service fee, Scott said.
Customers who use more water, including commercial and multiple unit customers, will see either that 5.1% increase or a higher percentage, depending on their water usage, Scott said.
This was the second-rate increase in a 12-month period for water district customers. The first came after Metropolitan Water District made its Jan. 2008 increase. The current increase aligns with an increase effective this month from MWD.
CVWD receives 60% of its water from the Verdugo basin and the other 40% is imported, through the Metropolitan Water District. So, every time MWD raises its rates, CVWD must go through the same public hearing process in order to raise its rates accordingly.
During the required notification and public hearings process, residents had up to 45 days from notification of the water rate increase to reject the proposal, in writing. If more than half the property owners within the district had rejected the proposed increase, the proposed fee would have been rejected.
According to the new four-tiered rate structure, the average customer who uses 22 units of water would see a $2 increase in their bill, from $84.20 to $86.20, Scott said.
Sewer rates also are increasing this month, in order to compensate for city of Los Angeles rates, which increased in 2007, said Charles Beatty, a director on the Crescenta Valley Water Board.
“We have no control over [city of Los Angeles rates]. We have to raise ours to make up for that or the whole district would be in trouble,” Beatty said.
Those rates went up $3 per month — not per billing cycle as with the water rates — for the average customer, taking that charge from $24.50 to $27.50 each month, Scott said.
The new water conservation ordinances regulate water use by residents, and prohibited uses include: water hose use for washing sidewalks, driveways, and many other non-essential uses; excess runoff and overspray onto hard surfaces, adjacent lands and gutters; non-circulating fountain or similar structure water use; and, leaks outside a residence or facility not repaired within 72 hours of notification. The list of regulations also prohibits vehicle washing of privately owned vehicles except for commercial car washes or “use of a hand-held bucket and quick rinses using a hose with a positive shut-off nozzle.”
For more information on water rate increases or the new conservation ordinances, visit the water district website at www.cvwd.com.