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Councilwoman Perry Wants Details On DWP Budget Cuts

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(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

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LOS ANGELES (CBS) — City Councilwoman Jan Perry wants the head of the Department of Water and Power to provide more details on his plans to cut up to $440 million in spending over three years.

Perry filed a motion in the Energy and Environment Committee on Wednesday asking that a DWP representative appear before the Council in 15 days “regarding the specific components” of their plan and “the impact, if any, to department operations/service levels and the ratepayers.”

DWP General Manager Ron Nichols announced the cuts yesterday, promising they would have no impact on services, but would not rule out a rate increase by the end of the year.

The cuts, already in effect, include a hiring freeze, delaying truck and property purchases, and refinancing some of the department’s debt.

“It’s the first time in a long time that the leadership of the DWP has been forthcoming and proactive in making cuts,” Perry told reporters. “I think it’s a good first step.”

Asked if there was more she would like to see DWP do to shrink its over-$4 billion budget, she said she would be looking back at old requests the Council had made to assess if any are still relevant and needed.

Perry said analysis from the City Administrative Officer would be helpful in determining if the cuts would have any bearing on the City’s ongoing budget crisis.

With the Mayor’s proposed 2011-12 budget scheduled to be released April 20, the city is facing an estimated $350 million deficit.

(©2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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