The Department of Public Utilities (DPU) will bring to the Board of Public Utilities (BPU) Aug. 17 a proposed ordinance to increase wholesale and retail water rates by 10-percent. If the proposed increase is approved, the ordinance will be introduced to the Los Alamos County Council to be scheduled for a public hearing in September. Council will consider adoption of the ordinance at that time.
DPU initially intended to calendar the public hearing on the rate increase for board members at the July 20 monthly BPU meeting. According to DPU officials, publishing requirements mandated that the public hearing be moved to Aug. 17.
Retail customers (including residential, commercial, county and schools) would see increases to the monthly service fee and commodity rates. Residential customers with meters sized at 1-1/4 inch or under would see the monthly service fee increase from $7.93 to $8.72; and customers with meters sized at 1-1/2 inch would see the monthly service fee increase from $25.12 to $27.63. Retail commodity charges will increase from $4.19 to $4.61 per 1,000 gallons for commercial, county and school customers all year, and residential and multi-family customers during the non-peak season.
Peak season tiered rates are in effect from May 1 through September 30 and only apply to residential and multi-family customers. Water consumed below 9,000 gallons would increase from $4.19 to $4.61 per 1,000 gallons for both residential and multi-family customers; water consumed between 9,000 and 15,000 gallons would increase from $4.45 to $4.90 per 1,000 gallons for residential customers and $4.40 to $4.84 per 1,000 gallons for multi-family customers; and water consumed above 15,000 gallons would increase from $5.32 to $5.85 per 1,000 gallons for residential customers and from $4.50 to $4.95 per 1,000 gallons for multi-family customers.
Rates are designed to allow the DPU to recover its costs, as well as bring in reasonable revenue to maintain reliable water services to Los Alamos County. In early August, the proposed ordinance will be published in the local papers, as well as posted on the Department of Public Utilities website at: www.losalamosnm.us/utilities and available at the Customer Care Center located at 1000 Central Avenue, Suite 130, Los Alamos, NM.
The Department of Public Utilities (DPU) operates the county-owned electric, gas, water and wastewater systems under the jurisdiction of the Board of Public Utilities. The Board normally meets the third Wednesday of each month at 5:30 p.m. and the public is always welcome. The DPU is funded by rates paid for electric, gas, water and wastewater services and auxiliary fees, and has provided the community with these services for more than 40 years. Contact the DPU at DPU@lacnm.us or 505.662.8333 or visit www.losalamosnm.us/UTILITIES.