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Cut Your Water Usage by 15% or Expect Higher Bills

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles take an unneeded shower| Photo by WonderRob™ via Flickr
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The Department of Water & Power yesterday voted to approve new water rates that will go into effect June 1st unless blocked by city council. "Customers will have to use less water to stay within a base rate. If they already are well within that range -- as many low-income customers are -- their bills should not rise," reported the LA Times. "Charges in a second tier above that base level will jump 44% under the plan. Higher overall summer rates will remain in effect year-round." Outdoor sprinkler usage will also be limited to two days a week instead of four. In the last 18 months, the city's water usage has decreased by 5% but officials predict a 12% water shortage later this year.

This comes as "precipitation in the Sierra Nevada has reached near normal levels for this time of year, according to state data," per the Times. "The statewide snowpack is 87% of the norm and reservoir storage is more than 70% of average. In the Eastern Sierra, which supplies the Los Angeles Aqueduct from the Owens Valley, snowpack is 78% of average." DWP counters, saying water deliveries to Los Angeles from the state will only be around 20% of its normal allocation.