Indiana American Water has filed a petition with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission to increase its tariffs to recover funds directed towards modernising water distribution networks.
The utility wants to recover $542 million invested in maintaining and enhancing services, water quality, system reliability and fire protection capabilities.
The utility says the investments made will help keep consumer water tariffs affordable.
If approved, rates will increase in phased approaches, by 8.22% in July 2019, and by 8.57% in July 2020.
Typical residential consumers will see a $5.60 increase in their monthly bill or 18 cents per day from August 1, 2018.
Monthly bills for customers using 4,000 gallons of water per month will increase by 16% in July 2020 following a 4.4% decrease in August owing to the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.
Indiana American Water President Deborah Dewey. “These investments are critical to the public’s health and safety and the economic health of the communities we serve and will also contribute to the creation of nearly 9,000 jobs across the state.
“We have also worked hard to hold our operating and maintenance expenses relatively flat by implementing efficiencies and leveraging technology and innovation throughout the workplace,” said Dewey. “Our O&M expenses have risen at a rate below the inflation rate over the last decade. Our successes represent more than $10 million of savings for our customers over what our expenses would have been if allowed to grow with inflation”.
A 2016 study by the Indiana Finance Authority states the region requires more than $2.3 billion in infrastructure needs for drinking water systems and an additional $815 million to maintain the systems into the future.