IURC approves wastewater rate increase

(WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Citizens customers will soon be getting higher bills.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission approved a wastewater rate increase on Wednesday. The IURC says contributing factors to the increase include EPA regulations and the 2006 Consent Decree, which requires the utility to perform infrastructure upgrades in order to reduce combined sewer overflows from the wastewater system into the city’s rivers and streams.

The rate increase is also because of the need to replace aging infrastructure and to continue efforts to expand wastewater service to areas that rely on septic tank systems, a release from the IURC said.

Citizens released the following statement on Wednesday after the announcement:

“Citizens Energy Group is pleased the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) approved a rate increase for its wastewater utility. The exact impact of the rate increase will be determined in a few days, but it is expected to be less than $14 per month for the average residential customer. We are concerned about the impact of rate increases and have programs in place to help those in need.

Underinvestment over the past 100 years has resulted in an antiquated sewer system that is discharging four billion gallons of raw sewage per year into waterways. The wastewater rate increase will allow Citizens to continue our program to virtually eliminate sewer overflows by the year 2025.  It will also allow us to continue eliminating failing septic tanks that are endangering human health and the environment across Marion County.”

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