Water bill surcharges (October 28, 2016)

William Beattie questions the wisdom of the CPUC in allowing retroactive surcharges for water service (Utilities Charges, Daily Press, October 28, 2016). Too bad Mr. Beattie didn’t attend the recent meeting where representatives of Liberty Utilities explained this and other water-bill-related issues.

The reason for the retroactive surcharges as I understand it is that the CPUC and ORA often take so long to rule on rate changes that by the time they authorize the new rates, the water utility has already lost money needed to maintain the system. The fix is to add temporary surcharges. As Eric Larsen from Liberty Utilities pointed out, they don’t like the surcharges any more than customers, but they provide a mechanism for helping to keep our water system functioning and healthy.

Greg Raven is Co-Chair of Apple Valley Citizens for Government Accountability, and is concerned about quality of life issues.

Published: Daily Press, November 4, 2016