Water customers in southern and western Connecticut are being asked to swallow some pretty serious rate hikes.
Aquarion Water Company wants to raise its rates in the fall for its customers in 47 Connecticut towns. Homeowners and business owners are not happy about it. They packed a public hearing in Fairfield Tuesday night in protest, Representative Town Meeting member Michael Herley calls the proposal “outrageous.”
In Fairfield rates would go up 18.3% in the first year or, according to Aquarion data, about $96 for the typical customer, followed by 1.8 and 1.9 % increases in the next two years.
In a letter to customers, Aquarion says their commitment to quality drinking water requires investment in areas like tanks, plant upgrades and dam improvements.
Tuesday’s public hearing was a chance for CT’s Public Utility Regulatory Authority (PURA) to gauge reaction from residents. Aquarion didn’t have a role but the company CEO and several other executives were present. They did not offer us immediate comment.
Any rate changes have to be approved by PURA. PURA will hold at least three other public hearings this summer on Aquarion’s rate hike request.