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Felipe Fuentes

DWP watchdog urges changes in hiring rules, union influence at utility

DWP watchdog urges changes in hiring rules, union influence at utility

In the wake of the botched rollout of a new billing system at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power that sent inaccurate bills to many customers, a new report by a watchdog agency says the city must make a host of changes to speed up utility hiring and outsourcing work to prevent similar problems in the future. The report said a root cause of the billing debacle and its messy aftermath was the sluggish way the agency hires and contracts workers, a problem that city ratepayer advocate Fred Pickel attributes to both municipal rules and union agreements. As it stands, “the current hiring and contracting processes are too lengthy, but the DWP Board cannot sufficiently change or...

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