Bry said in a statement that she began receiving complaints in November, and in follow-up meetings with department officials “found no leaks or clear reasons to account for the increased water usage.”
“Based on conversations with my council colleagues and recent news reports, it is clear this issue is having an impact citywide,” said Bry, who represents District 1.
She asked the City Auditor, Eduardo Luna, to conduct a comprehensive audit of the department’s data acquisitions and billing procedures. The audit is expected to be completed by June.
Following Bry’s call for the audit, Mayor Kevin Faulconer said he has asked for every complaint to be reviewed by the department. “San Diegans need to be able to trust that their bills are correct — and that every cent they pay goes to ensuring we have safe, reliable water,” he said.
His office cited a number of factors that could cause higher bills:
- A rate increase of 6.9 percent that the City Council approved in 2015 and took effect on Aug. 1, 2017
- A one-time billing schedule change that extended the normal 60-day billing period by up to 70 days for the November and December timeframeWarmer winter months that have led to higher water usage for many customers
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