The Big Bear Lake Department of Water and Power will host the first of two town hall meetings regarding water rates tomorrow, Wednesday, at which time the public will have the opportunity to ask questions of DWP staff. The Department of Water and Power has proposed two rate increases, the first of which would take effect in January 2010 (if approved by the City Council of Big Bear Lake); the second increase would take effect in July 2011. As explained by the DWP’s General Manager Joel Dickson, “The overall system-wide increase is nine percent, which won’t be applied across-the-board, but that will be the average increase.” Though the January increase for residential customers is proposed at 12 percent, Dickson notes, “We’ve set a minimum bill equal to 4 ccfs and, by setting a minimum bill, not every customer who is a residential customer will experience a 12 percent increase. A typical, full-time customer uses 6 ccfs per month, and their bill will actually decrease by an average of two percent per month.” The second increase is proposed as nine percent, across-the-board, for both residential and commercial customers, as well as those in Rim Forest. Tomorrow’s town hall meeting will be held not at DWP, but at the offices of the Big Bear Municipal Water District, located at 40524 Lakeview Drive in Big Bear Lake, at 6pm; the next town hall meeting will be on Saturday, September 19 at 10am. The official protest hearing is scheduled for October 6. For more information on the proposed rate increases for DWP customers in Big Bear Lake, Sugarloaf and Lake Williams, see our August 17 story, featuring information from DWP GM Dickson.