LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Department of Water and Power General Manager Ron Nichols said he participated in almost 70 of the 80 public hearings the department held over an 18-month period to get last year’s two-step, 10.9% rate increases approved in September.

Both road shows for bond investors and public hearings on additional rate increases will be a regular part of Nichols’ life for the next several years as LADWP has an $8.9 billion infrastructure program planned. Those needs mean additional rate increases varying from five to seven percent between 2014 to 2017, Nichols said.

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