Aqua Indiana customers asked to comment on rate increase proposal

(WANE) Aqua Indiana customers are invited to comment on the company’s plans to increase sewer rate increase.

Aqua Indiana, Inc. has proposed a two-phase increase for its Aboite Wastewater Division, which includes more than 13,000 customers in Allen, Huntington and Whitley counties.

The utility company said it plans to increase operating and maintenance costs. Its proposal also included plans for capital improvements.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission will hold a public field hearing Tuesday, May 17 in the Summit Middle School Cafeteria (4509 Homestead Road in Fort Wayne) at 6:00 p.m. An OUCC informational meeting on field hearing procedures and the regulatory process will start at 5:30 p.m.

Projects include doubling the Midwest Wastewater Treatment Plant’s capacity, constructing a new office and field services building, and completing a series of infrastructure improvements aimed at addressing sanitary sewer overflow violations, manhole safety, capacity issues for current and future growth, and other matters.

The utility’s proposal would generate nearly $2.4 million in new annual operating revenues, with its proposed 29.8 percent increase applying equally to its residential, commercial, and other customer classes. The utility’s exhibits show that a monthly sewer bill for a metered residential customer using 5,000 gallons of water per month would rise from $46.98 to $56.29 when a Commission order is issued and to $60.96 approximately a year later. This would include an increase in the monthly service charge – the portion of the bill that does not vary with usage – from $26.97 to $32.32 in the case’s first phase, and to $35.00 in Phase Two. A residential customer who pays a flat, monthly unmetered rate would see his or her sewer bill rise from $59.21 to $70.96 when an order is issued and to $76.83 approximately a year later.

The utility is also requesting approval of a $1,300 system development charge. This one-time fee would not apply to current customers but would be charged to new customers or builders when a new, first-time connection is made to a home or business.

Customers have until June 17 to submit comments or concerns to the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor. They can be submitted by online at www.in.gov/oucc/2361.htm, or by mail, email or fax:

Mail: Consumer Services Staff
Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor
115 W. Washington St., Suite 1500 South
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Email: uccinfo@oucc.IN.gov

Fax: (317) 232-5923

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