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In response to the criticism it garnered for the notices the city sent water and sewer customers earlier this year, Mayor Jerry Sanders spruced up the announcements he is proposing to send out for the latest round of rate changes.

Under state law, the city of San Diego must inform users of its water and wastewater systems about any proposed rate changes before the City Council can consider enacting them. The noticing requirement is supposed to ensure that customers can study the rate proposal, provide input and, if they choose to, formally protest the changes.

Sanders is proposing to send out notices that include multicolored graphics and summaries in boldface type. Also included in the proposed notices are charts and cut-out protest forms.

The City Council will have final say on what is distributed to customers at its July 31 meeting, but Sanders said he thinks the notice he is proposing will be much easier to read than the documents sent out before February’s consideration of four-year increase to water and sewer bills. The city received complaints that those notices were unreadable leading up to the hearing.

“I think last time it was very legal. We had attorneys do it. This time, we had the attorneys turn it into English,” Sanders said.

EVAN McLAUGHLIN

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