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LADWP Ranked 13th Most-Hated Company In America

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — As the City Council continues to negotiate over what comes next for the city's biggest utility firm, there's one thing that is no longer up for debate: the Department of Water & Power is among the most-hated companies in the U.S.

The American Customer Satisfaction Index ranks the LADWP the 13th-worst firm when it comes to consumer satisfaction — a list that includes some of the nation's biggest airlines, banks, and power and telecom companies.

Among the biggest reasons for the poor showing: a corruption trial, an outdated billing system, and the ongoing fight over proposed rate hikes.

Back in April, Councilman Dennis Zine said an estimated 30,000 customers may have been over-billed after a report on alleged practices that may have netted the DWP hundreds of thousands of dollars in late fees.

Despite all the bad PR, the LADWP wants to raise electric and water rates in advance of a new "green" energy initiative laid out by the city.

If the City Council approves the rate hikes, customers could end up paying up to 16 percent more for water and power over the next three years.

The LADWP is joined on the list by some other unpopular utilities: Pacific Gas & Electric (#13), the Long Island Power Authority (#12) and Pepco (#1).

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