Protesters Demand L.A. Drop Support of Water Tunnels

Demonstrators rallied outside Los Angeles City Hall Monday to call on city officials to oppose plans to pass along the cost of a water supply project in Northern California - to local ratepayers.

“Today we are here to call on Mayor Garcetti and the City Council to stop a massive rate and tax increase on L.A. residents,” said organizer Brenda Norton with the group Food and Water Watch.

A Council committee is set to vote Tuesday on whether to endorse the tunnels, which are projected to cost between $17 and $70 billion in order to create a new supply route for fresh water.

Opponents say it’s too expensive, and water agencies should be directly responsible for the cost, rather than ratepayers.

In Los Angeles the Department of Water and Power’s ratepayer advocate has estimated customers will pay between $50 and $100 a year to cover the cost.

The Metropolitan Water District - the water wholesaler for Southern California - supports the project.

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