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20170629 Vicki Gardner Century 21

home : hope-area news : general July 24, 2017

5/16/2017 4:23:00 AM
Thursday hearing set for water rate hike
Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor
The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor represents Indiana consumer interests before state and federal bodies that regulate utilities. As a state agency, the OUCC's mission is to represent all Indiana consumers to ensure quality, reliable utility services at the most reasonable prices possible through dedicated advocacy, consumer education, and creative problem solving.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission will hold a public hearing in Taylorsville on a proposed water rate increase by Eastern Bartholomew Water Corp. that will affect Hope Utilities customers.

The public field hearing will be held on Thursday, May 18th at 7 p.m. in the cafeteria at Taylorsville Elementary School, 9711 Walnut St.

Eastern Bartholomew Water Corp. is a not-for-profit utility serving more than 5,100 customers in Bartholomew, Decatur and Jennings counties. The town of Hope is one of its largest bulk customers.

The company's current rates were approved in 2008. The utility's pending request would raise the monthly residential water rate for 5,000 gallons from $22.83 to $33.77, an increase that would be directly passed on to Hope customers. The money raised would be used to issue and repay bonds to pay for improvements to the water system including replacing two water treatment plants that were purchased used in the 1970s with a single new treatment facility. The utility is also proposing a new storage tank, new office and maintenance buildings, main extensions, new meters and hydrants, and GIS mapping of the utility's water distribution system.

Hope officials have announced that they plan to oppose the rate increase.

The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor represents the interests of rate payers before the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission. The OUCC is reviewing the utility's request and anticipates filing testimony on May 23.

The agency announced on Thursday that at the May 18th public hearing, consumers will be able to:

  • Speak directly to the Commission, under oath and on the record, regarding the rate case.

  • Submit written comments for the case record.

    Commissioners are not allowed to answer questions during the field hearing. However, OUCC staff will be available before, during and after the hearing to address questions about the process.

    Consumers who are unable to attend the field hearing but wish to submit written comments. Comments will carry equal weight whether they are oral or written.

    To submit written comments, customers may do so via:

  • The OUCC's website at www.in.gov/oucc/2361.htm

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

  • Email at uccinfo@oucc.IN.gov

  • Fax at 317-232-5923

    Comments should include the consumer's name, mailing address, and a reference to "IURC Cause No. 44903."

    Written comments the OUCC receives by June 14th will be filed with the Commission to be included in the case's formal evidentiary record. Consumers with questions about submitting written comments may call the OUCC toll-free at 1-888-441-2494.

    (IURC Cause No. 44903)

    Related Links:
    • Case updates are being posted on the OUCC’s website at www.in.gov/oucc/2507.htm.

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