PUC suspends proposed Hanover water rate increase

Matt Enright
York Dispatch
Under Hanover’s proposal, the average bill for a residential customer would increase from $275.75 to $353.28 per year.

The Public Utilities Commission halted Hanover's proposed water rate increase, which would have increased its annual revenues by 27%.

According to the commission, the proposal would increase the average bill for a residential customer  from $275.75 to $353.28 per year.

The state Office of Consumer Advocate and the Office of Small Business Advocate both filed formal complaints against the proposed increase.

"Investigation and analysis of this proposed tariff supplement and the supporting data indicates that the proposed changes in rates, rules, and regulations may be unlawful, unjust, unreasonable, and contrary to public interest," a letter from the commission reads.

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Hanover initially proposed the change in June. It would apply to customers in Penn Township, Conewago Township, McSherrystown and parts of Heidelberg Township. 

In July, Hanover borough Treasurer Sam Miller said the reason for the increase was to boost direct investment into the borough’s water transmission line rehabilitation program. That's intended to ensure dependable water quality supply is provided throughout the system.

The decision was assigned to the PUC's Office of Administrative Law Judge for an investigation and recommended decision. A final decision is due by March 28, 2022.

A public hearing on the matter is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 14. To testify, residents must register by contacting the Office of Consumer Advocate at 1-800-684-6560 to provide their name, telephone number, email address and topic of their testimony by 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 12. Residents who do not wish to testify but want to listen also  can contact the OCA.

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