Will the PSC flush the water company request? Or will we see red ink in our commodes?
Back on December 30, 2009, Utilities, Inc., the parent company of Water Services Corporation of Kentucky, (WSCK) filed a rate increase request with the Kentucky Public Services Commission. The company asked for an eye popping 50.8% increase.
After a petition drive, letter writing campaign, public hearing in the affected towns and a hearing in Frankfort, the company settled with the Commission and the Attorney General for a 31% increase.
They are back for the percentage left lying on the table.
In late December 2010, Water Services Corporation of Kentucky, Inc. filed a request with the Kentucky Public Service Commission for a 21.95% increase. The Company began running a public announcement in the weekly Hickman County Gazette two weeks ago. The ad predicts that the average rate payer’s bill on the first 1000 gallons used from $11.64 to $14.19.
Clinton ratepayers are stunned by the company’s request. The most frequent response was that of Peggy Howell of the Kountry Café in Clinton.
“You’re kidding, right?” when she heard of the requested increase.
Readers may remember West Kentucky’s Journal story about mega – corp AIG’s interest in Utilities, Inc. At that time, AIG had an investment in Utilities, Inc. of 12%. We ran the story as AIG Comes to Clinton, . Other stories followed which can be accessed by going to the search function on the and keying in “Utilities Inc.”
Since the company’s request two years ago, the US economy slid into the deepest recession since the 1930s. Inflation is flat. The unemployment rate stood yesterday at 9%, a small improvement over the two years when it hovered closer to 10%.
The company closed its Middlesboro office after the 2009 rate hike and moved its billing operations out of state. In the first letter of protest to be submitted to the PSC, Glynna Brown of Middlesboro wrote that now Middlesboro residents have to wait twenty minutes on the phone to talk with a live person when there is a problem.
Clinton’s water office had already closed before the last rate request. One company employee oversees the water company’s interests and manages the City of Clinton’s sewer system. Clinton’s sewer bills are tied at 133% to WSCK water rates. Clinton residents will see sewer rates also rise if the rate increase is granted.
The rate request and all activities in the case can be accessed at the Kentucky Public Service Commission’s website: Case No. 2010-00476.
Comments about the request can be mailed to the PSC at 211 Sower Blvd. Frankfort, KY 42031.