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By Kristin Kjaero


February 14, 2010 (La Mesa) -- How will water rates change as of July 1, 2010, and will individual water budgets be imposed as part of the process?


The Helix Water District (HWD) Board will discuss these February 17 and March 17, 2010 respectively.


Staff is presenting a schedule for both the 2010-2011 District budget and 2010-2011 rate setting process, available here.


The draft recommends the Board vote on preliminary and final rate studies on April 7 and 21, with a public Prop 218 rate hearing June 16 for new rates that would go into effect on July 1.


The new rates would precede an anticipated cost increase to HWD by six months, although the commodity rate has not yet been set by the Metropolitan Water District and the San Diego County Water Authority, from which Helix purchases the majority of its water.


Votes on preliminary and final District budget are recommended for June 8 and August 4.


Not included in the current agenda, the staff report notes that either staff or the Ad Hoc Committee on Water Rates will be “returning to the Board on March 17 with a recommendation for water budgets.”


Individual water budgets (i.e. imposing limits and fines for customers that exceed them), have generated controversy across southern California, while a number of northern California districts still do not meter customer usage, charging instead a flat monthly rate.


Board meetings are held on first and third Wednesdays at 2:00 p.m., in the District Office Board Room at 7811 University Ave., La Mesa.  Get map

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