West Virginia Utility Seeks 28 Percent Water Rate Increase

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) – West Virginia’s biggest water utility wants to increase its rates by 28 percent.

On Thursday, West Virginia American Water announced a $35.5 million case to increase rates with the Public Service Commission.

The company attributes the proposed increase to $105 million in system improvements since 2012 and $98 million in projects planned through February 2017.

West Virginia American Water says the increase doesn’t include costs from the January 2014 chemical spill, which sullied its water for 300,000 people for days.

If approved, the average family using 3,256 gallons per month would see their monthly water bill increase from $41.27 to $52.90.

The minimum bill for 1,500 gallons would increase from $23.20 to $30.06.

The PSC has up to 300 days for review. New rates wouldn’t be effective before February 2016.