By Anthony Saude
Chino Hills -The Chino Hills City Council has approved a new system to bill residents for their water use.
Beginning July 1, the city will give households a “water budget” – or allocation. This allocation will be based on the number of people living at the residence and their daily usage. Outdoor landscaped areas and weather will also help factor into the equation used in determining allocations.
Rates will increase by 8 percent on July 1. The city has the option of raising rates another 8 percent on July 1 of each year through 2022.
Approximately 61 percent of customers will see up to a $5 increase per month, according to, a city consultant. About 25 percent of customers will experience a $5 to $10 increase.
Most people in the water industry believe that we will experience another drought, so we need to be stewards with this scarce resource historically available in California. The hope of course is to promote more efficient water use by residents. The City believes they have developed a rate structure that does that and is fair.
The council voted 3-2 Tuesday, May 8, to approve the new rate structure, known as budget-based rates, and rate increases.
Councilmen Brian Johsz and Ray Marquez voted against the proposal while Mayor Peter Rogers, Vice Mayor Cynthia Moran and Councilman Art Bennett voted in favor of it.
Before the vote, the city had received 5,671 qualifying protest votes, fewer than the 11,095 required by state law to defeat the proposal.
About a dozen residents addressed the council on the proposal, some citing concern over the new rate structure and the impact increases may have on senior citizens and lower income residents.