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PSD files rate increase

By Staff | Sep 29, 2011

The Friendly Public Service District has filed a notice of rate increase with the Public Service Commission of West Virginia.

The purpose of the increase is to unify the rates of the District’s four separate rate schedules and will become effective Oct. 13.

The increases (displayed ion page 17 of the Tyler Star News) are based on averages of all customers in the indicated class, and individual customers may receive increases that are greater or less than average. These requested rates are only a proposal and are subject to change by the Public Service Commission in its review of this filing. Any increase in rates and charges will not become effective until authorized and approved by the Public Service Commission.

In Oct., 1997 the West Virginia Public Service Commission rejected recommendations for a unified rate hike for the Friendly Public Service District. At that time, the unified rate could have meant a 56 percent increase for customers of the core service area, while reducing rates for new customers as much as 48 percent in other areas the district served.

In the denial, the PSC adopted the administrative low judge’s recommendation not to unify rates, but also put the district officials on notice that the recommendation to consolidate rates may come at some point in the future.

In April, 2004 about 30 customers of the Tyler County Public Service District, formerly Friendly Public Service District, attended a public meeting to discuss a proposed water rate increase.

The PSD requested that the Public Service Commission grant a 21-cent per 1,000 gallons increase for the 392 customers in the W.Va. 180 and Pursley water systems. The PSC recommended an 18-cent per 1,000 gallons increase for all PSD service areas–W.Va. 180, Pursley, Pleasants Ridge, and Friendly.

The PSC made the recommendation on the basis that everyone serviced by the PSD should share the cost of the district’s maintenance and upkeep.

The point of contention at that time was the fact that when the system first expanded, customers were promised that any additional systems would not affect the Friendly customers. Which is why the PSD has maintained four rate structures, one for each of their systems — Friendly, Pursley, Pleasants Ridge and W.Va. 180.

Individuals desiring to protest or intervene need to file a written protest or petition prior to Oct. 13. A failure to protest or intervene in a timely manner can affect an individuals rights to protest any rate increases and to participate in future proceedings. All protests and petitions to intervene should be addressed to the Executive Secretary, Public Service Commission of West Virginia, PO Box 812, Charleston, WV, 25323.