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Santa Monica | Community News File

Council Decision Could Lower Some Water Bills

September 11, 1997

A decision by the City Council may mean lower water bills for a few residents and businesses who can prove that their water needs are significantly different from those of average users, a city public works official said Wednesday.

A plan approved Tuesday will allow water customers to petition for an adjustment of their billing rate based on factors such as size of household, nature of business or percentage of a property that is devoted to landscape, said Craig Perkins, director of environmental and public works management.

For example, Perkins said a single-family household occupied by at least twice the average number of people could qualify for an adjustment, as could a business that relies on water, such as a carwash. Also eligible for rate adjustments are properties that have 50% more than the standard amount of landscape in relation to the property's structures and other "hardscape."

"The council believes it is not fair to force people who are significantly different into the one-size-fits-all structure," Perkins said.

He said customers who want to apply for billing rate adjustments must fill out an application and provide documentation showing eligibility.

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