OUCC Asks Aqua Indiana to Trim Request
The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor has filed a recommendation with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission regarding a proposed sewer rate increase for Aqua Indiana. The OUCC is proposing an increase of 15.6 percent for the utility’s Aboite wastewater division in Allen County, down from Aqua’s proposed increase of 29.8 percent.
Under the Fort Wayne-area utility’s proposal, metered customers would see a nearly $13 increase in their wastewater bills each month, whereas the increase would be nearly $8 under the OUCC’s recommendation. The OUCC is also proposing relief for non-metered customers.
The OUCC is recommending Aqua Indiana be disallowed from recovering $350,000 in operating expenses. However, it is approving the utility’s request for a one-time, $1,300 system development charge that would be paid by property developers for new connections.
More than 400 written comments and petition signatures were submitted to the OUCC by Aqua Indiana customers regarding the proposed rate increase. Aqua Indiana has until July 19 to file rebuttal testimony with the IURC.
The IURC will hold an evidentiary hearing on August 9 in Indianapolis with written closing arguments due in the weeks following the hearing.