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San Diego Water Rates Could Increase Sharply

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The city of San Diego's Water Department is calling for a sharp jump in rates that will help the city deal with costs linked to the drought.

Water rates will jump twice next year if city officials get their way. The department is asking for a 9.8 percent increase in January and then a 6.9 percent rate hike six months later in July.

The Water Department is dealing with two financial issues related to the drought. The city is paying more for the water it buys from the San Diego County Water Authority and customers are using less water, so the city is taking in less money.

The typical water bill will go up about $7 a month, to just over $77.

A city council committee will review the proposal early next month. Once that happens the water department will send a mailer to all customers explaining the proposed rate increases.

A final decision is expected before the end of the year.