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Green Bay water utility seeks 9 percent rate hike to help fund pipe replacement - Green Bay Press Gazette (posted January 28, 2018)
GREEN BAY, Wis. (GREEN BAY PRESS GAZETTE) — The Green Bay Water Utility has applied to the Public Service Commission to raise water rates.
The utility is seeking a 9 percent rate hike, which would mean about an additional $1.44 per month on the average residential user’s water bill, according to the utility.
The purpose for the increase is to cover rising costs and to implement the utility’s new plan for a more aggressive pipe-replacement schedule, director Nancy Quirk said.
The utility has 440 miles of pipe in the ground, some of which are more than 100 years old, and it had been working on a schedule of replacement of about 2.5 miles a year, Quirk said. The utility is also in the process of replacing the last of the city's lead service lines, a project that is expected to be completed in 2021.
The city’s water commissioners would like to double that replacement schedule, and the plan done by consultants last year lays out a strategy of replacing pipes where the need is greatest, Quirk said.
Water rates have not changed in Green Bay since November 2015. The utility applied for a 7 percent increase last summer but withdrew the application to gather more information.
At the time, the PSC questioned whether the proposed increase was adequate.
This new application is the beginning of a process that could take several months as the PSC seeks additional information about the utility’s cost of service and holds public hearings.
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