State approves rate hike for Indy-area water customers

Indianapolis-area residents will see their monthly water rates rise by an average of $5 starting in May, after state regulators approved an increase Wednesday to help fund improvements to Citizens’ aging system.

The average bill for Citizens residential customers in the nine-county metropolitan area would increase from about $30 a month to $35, the utility said.

The company had requested the rate increase last summer, and in December reached a settlement agreement with the Utility Consumer Counselor and several other consumer groups.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission authorized Citizens to increase its water rates to generate additional revenue of $27.7 million. That’s an increase of about 16 percent.

Citizens said it will use the money to fund system improvements over the next two years, including new water mains, reservoir dredging, development of a quarry in Hamilton County into a new reservoir, and upgrades to treatment plants.

The state agency is expected to rule this summer on a separate request by Citizens to raise sewer rates by about 30 percent over the next two years to upgrade the system, which now releases billions of gallons of raw sewage into rivers and streams.

Citizens serves about 400,000 customers in the Indianapolis area.

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