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Public Notice to Augusta Water & Sewer Utility Customers

Utility Customer Public Hearing Notice

PUBLIC NOTICE TO ALL CUSTOMERS OF THE

CITY OF AUGUSTA MUNICIPAL WATER AND SEWER UTILITY

 

The City of Augusta Municipal Water and Sewer Utility (Utility) has filed an application with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSCW) to increase water rates.  The increase is necessary due to a 75.03 percent increase in gross plant investment and a 57.02 percent increase in operating expenses since the last water rate case was completed in 2006.

 

The total increase in water revenues requested is $241,646 which will result in an estimated overall rate increase of 66.60 percent over the water utility’s present revenues. 

 

The Utility currently collects $113,071 annually from the City of Augusta (City) for providing public fire protection (PFP) to the City.  This cost covers the additional storage, pumping, and distribution required to provide the high flows and pressures needed to fight fires.  The City collects the municipal PFP charge of $113,071 (100 percent of the total PFP cost) from property taxes and pays this charge to the water utility.  The City recently approved changing the method of recovering the PFP charge from the municipal PFP charge to a direct PFP charge that collects 100 percent of the charge directly from water utility customers.  As such, the City requested Commission authorization to collect the PFP charge from each customer of the water utility, based on the Equivalent Meters Method.  This change in the method of recovering the PFP charge will allow for the collection of a portion of PFP charges from property owners who are not subject to property taxes.  The Utility intends not to charge non-general service customers.

 

If the request is granted, the water bill for an average residential customer with a ⅝-inch or ¾-inch meter who uses 3,000 gallons of water per month will increase from $13.92 to $43.49, or 212.50 percent, which includes the overall increase from the rate case and the Utility’s request to switch from municipal to direct PFP charges.  The Utility also requested to change the billing frequency from quarterly to monthly.

 

A telephonic public hearing on the application has been scheduled for Friday, November 20, 2020, at 11:00 a.m.  This virtual hearing has no physical location.  This is a virtual hearing to which members of the public may attend by telephone or listen to live broadcast on-line.  Scheduling questions regarding this hearing may be directed to the PSCW at (608) 266-3766.

 

To attend by telephone use the following:

 

1.      Dial-in number:        (872) 240-3212  (Toll)

2.      Access Code:           903-694-349 #

A person may testify in this proceeding without becoming a party and without attorney representation.  A person may submit this testimony in only one of the following ways:

 

·      Web Comment.  Go to the Commission’s web site at http://psc.wi.gov, click on “File a Comment”.  On the next page select the “File a comment” link that appears for docket number 270-WR-101.  Web comments shall be received no later than Thursday, November 26, 2020.

·      Oral Comment.  Speak over the telephone during the public session.  The Administrative Law Judge may receive an oral comment from any member of the public in attendance after the close of any party and Commission staff testimony.  The Administrative Law Judge will receive an oral comment by unmuting each phone connection one at a time and inquiring into the each caller’s desire to comment.

·      Mail Comment.  All comments submitted by U.S. Mail shall be received no later than Thursday, November 26, 2020 and shall be addressed to: Attn: Docket 270-WR-101 Comments, Public Service Commission, P.O. Box 7854, Madison, WI 53707-7854.

 

The PSCW intends to webcast this hearing live on the PSCW’s web site at http://psc.wi.gov under the “PSC Live Broadcast” button.

 

All documents in this docket are filed on the Commission’s Electronic Records Filing (ERF) system. To view these documents: (1) go to the Commission’s E-Services Portal at http://apps.psc.wi.gov, (2) enter “270-WR-101” in the box labeled “Quick Single Docket Search,” and (3) select “Documents”.

 

If you have any questions, please contact the City of Augusta Municipal Water and Sewer Utility at (715) 286-2555.