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Davis Signs Hetch Hetchy Bill

Three bills designed to jump-start repairs to San Francisco’s Hetch Hetchy water system have been signed by Governor Davis.

The long-overdue work will upgrade the system to withstand earthquakes and expand its capacity to ship water from near Yosemite to San Francisco and 29 suburban water districts.

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission says a major quake could knock out water service for 60 days or more.

After signing the measures yesterday, Davis said they would help secure the water future for the system’s 2.5-million customers in Alameda, San Mateo, Santa Clara and San Francisco counties.

San Francisco voters are being asked to approve a $1.6-billion bond issue to finance the city’s share of the $3.6-billion dollar project.

Experts say if the projects are completed as planned, Hetch Hetchy residential customers will see bills double and even triple over the next 13 years.