By Jason KUROSU
The Glendale City Council voted to delay increased drought rates for Glendale Water & Power customers for at least six months, after conservation efforts by Glendale residents and the city’s curtailing of imported water purchases prevented the need to raise rates.
At the city council’s Tuesday night meeting, GWP General Manager Steven Zurn recommended delaying the imposition of Phase III rates until April of next year, despite the city’s currently being under Phase III drought conditions.
The city council moved to Phase II water conservation guidelines in April, which included limiting outdoor watering to two days per week. However, the council delayed moving to Phase III drought rates for six months, opting to revisit the rate issue in October.
The city’s current Phase II drought rates are $0.75 per hundred cubic feet sold, while Phase III rates are $1.30 per hundred cubic feet sold.
Zurn said the city has exceeded the state mandated 20% reduction in water usage, with a 25% reduction charted between June and September.
However, the city had set budgetary and revenue projections for a 30% reduction during Phase III, but Zurn said that with the reduction of water use and imported water purchases, moving to Phase III drought rates won’t be necessary.
“Our folks have done a very stellar job,” said Zurn, who credited GWP customers for conserving through the summer months, as well as during a warmer than expected October.
The city council passed the resolution unanimously.
Zurn said that GWP will reassess the situation in April, at which time conservation needs could be further affected by any potential or received winter rains.