IBJNews

Waterworks proposes 35-percent rate hike

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

The Indianapolis Department of Waterworks today unveiled a capital-improvements proposal that would raise water rates for the average residential customer by 35 percent, or $8 a month.

The proposed projects totaling $111 million were filed with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, which must weigh whether to approve all or part of the amount. That could take a year.

The largest single infrastructure project amounts to $31.9 million in general distribution-system improvements over 4,264 miles of water mains.

The department also wants to spend $27.5 million to build an alternative intake for the White River Treatment Plant northwest of downtown. Currently, most of the plant’s water comes from White River in Broad Ripple, via the 7-mile Central Canal.

The department seeks an alternative source in the event the canal or a key dam on the White River happens to fail, and as a backup during maintenance. The canal system would still be the primary source, as it moves water by gravity versus the need for a pumping station.

An additional $1.1 million is sought to make improvements to the dam on the White River, resulting from damage to its concrete apron last February.

The other big capital request is $23.2 million to add water-disinfection systems at the department’s other water plants to comply with stricter Environmental Protection Agency mandates.

Earlier this year, the city won a 12-percent emergency rate hike from the IURC, having initially sought nearly 18 percent. The emergency hike was the fallout of a failed bond refinancing strategy undertaken by the city a few years ago that put the bulk of the water utility’s debt in variable-rate bonds. Costs soared after the meltdown of financial markets last year.

Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard this summer sought ideas on how to reduce costs of the city’s water and sewer systems. The city has received proposals ranging from selling the utilities to Indianapolis-based Citizens Energy to various new management schemes by private firms.

If approved as submitted, the average monthly residential bill would rise to $31.33 from $23.22.
 

 

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. These liberals are out of control. They want to drive our economy into the ground and double and triple our electric bills. Sierra Club, stay out of Indy!

  2. These activist liberal judges have gotten out of control. Thankfully we have a sensible supreme court that overturns their absurd rulings!

  3. Maybe they shouldn't be throwing money at the IRL or whatever they call it now. Probably should save that money for actual operations.

  4. For you central Indiana folks that don't know what a good pizza is, Aurelio's will take care of that. There are some good pizza places in central Indiana but nothing like this!!!

  5. I am troubled with this whole string of comments as I am not sure anyone pointed out that many of the "high paying" positions have been eliminated identified by asterisks as of fiscal year 2012. That indicates to me that the hospitals are making responsible yet difficult decisions and eliminating heavy paying positions. To make this more problematic, we have created a society of "entitlement" where individuals believe they should receive free services at no cost to them. I have yet to get a house repair done at no cost nor have I taken my car that is out of warranty for repair for free repair expecting the government to pay for it even though it is the second largest investment one makes in their life besides purchasing a home. Yet, we continue to hear verbal and aggressive abuse from the consumer who expects free services and have to reward them as a result of HCAHPS surveys which we have no influence over as it is 3rd party required by CMS. Peel the onion and get to the root of the problem...you will find that society has created the problem and our current political landscape and not the people who were fortunate to lead healthcare in the right direction before becoming distorted. As a side note, I had a friend sit in an ED in Canada for nearly two days prior to being evaluated and then finally...3 months later got a CT of the head. You pay for what you get...

ADVERTISEMENT