PUCO approves Aqua Ohio system improvement charge
COLUMBUS, OHIO (Oct. 23, 2019) – The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) today adopted a settlement agreement that authorizes Aqua Ohio (Aqua) to increase its rates for water service. Aqua will add a 3.733% surcharge to customer bills until the utility’s next distribution rate case before the PUCO. Areas where Aqua’s rates are established by local ordinances are not affected.
Ohio law allows PUCO regulated water and wastewater companies to establish a system improvement charge based upon capital improvements and infrastructure replacements it has made since it last received authority to increase rates. Ohio law also allows a utility to have up to three system improvement charges concurrently. The charge approved today will be the second system improvement charge in effect at the same time as the Commission approved a system improvement charge of 3.66% in February 2019.
In its application, Aqua stated it has made $18 million in infrastructure improvements and replacements since its last distribution rate case or system improvement charge case and requested a charge of 3.767%.
On Feb. 6, 2019, the Commission approved a system improvement charge in the amount of 3.66% for Aqua Ohio customers receiving water service in its Lake Erie Division, Masury Division and the service areas formerly served by Ohio American Water Company, Mohawk Utilities, Inc. and Tomahawk Utilities, Inc. Case number 18-337-WW-SIC.
On March 4, 2019, Aqua filed an application to establish a second system improvement charge for water service in these areas.
On June 24, 2019, PUCO staff filed its review and recommendations.
On Aug. 20, 2019, Aqua filed a stipulation, or settlement agreement, signed by the company and PUCO staff.
The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) is the sole agency charged with regulating public utility service. The role of the PUCO is to assure all residential, business and industrial consumers have access to adequate, safe and reliable utility services at fair prices while facilitating an environment that provides competitive choices. Consumers with utility-related questions or concerns can call the PUCO Call Center at (800) 686-PUCO (7826) and speak with a representative.
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