WV American Water receives rate order from PUC
In an order entered late Friday afternoon, the Public Service Commission of West Virginia approved an agreement reached by the company, PSC staff and the Consumer Advocate Division to establish new water and wastewater rates for West Virginia American Water. West Virginia American Water's rate request was driven by the company's ongoing infrastructure investments, which are necessary to maintain and improve water quality, service reliability, and fire protection. The company has invested $200 million in improvements to upgrade water mains, treatment plants, tanks, valves, booster stations and other infrastructure since its last rate case. Another driver was the continued decline in population and water usage. The new rates, effective Feb. 25, 2019, reflect a 14 percent net increase over current rates and follow a 300-day review of the company's rate request filed last April. Per the PSC's order, the company's DSIC surcharge will be reset to zero for the remainder of 2019, and the company's excess deferred taxes, brought about by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, will benefit customers by offsetting 2019 and future years' DSIC surcharges. The order also supports a new approach to addressing customers' lead service lines proposed by the company as part of its commitment to maintain excellent water quality and protect customer health and safety. The new rates change the average residential customer water bill by $6.69 from $47.51 to $54.20. The minimum bill for 1,500 gallons changes from $26.72 to $31.44. Wastewater rates for the company's sewer systems in Fayette County will also change by 17.44% percent or approximately $7.49 per month for the average residential wastewater bill.