You shouldn't use softened water in your tank. The calcium (which plants and animals need) is replaced with sodium, which they do not. There's usually a bypass on most systems so that you can access water before it enters the softener. Sometimes you have to go to a spiget outide, but it's a short weekend handi-job to plumb one in if you have to. The pH of your water is probably high, as is almost all of the LA area, due to it's source. This is not a bad thing and I would probably talk to a local fish store about how it might impact your plant and animal choices, if at all. CO2 when dissolved in water exists as phosphoric acid and will lower the pH as much as a point or point and a half downward. Fish don't seem to mind this, however.