American Suburban Utilities Rate Increase Decision Delayed
The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission says it needs an additional two months to review American Suburban Utilities’ rate hike request due to the method the utility used to formulate its proposed rates.
The Commission says the privately-owned wastewater utility near West Lafayette used a hybrid test-period to calculate rate increases phased in over three years – a methodology the Commission has not seen before.
Due to the complexity of the formula, the regulatory panel filed notice it won’t meet a state-imposed deadline to render a decision within 300 days of the original rate request filing.
Instead, the Commission gave itself until August 29 to set new rates.
Under Indiana law, a utility has the right to seek a temporary increase if the Commission misses the deadline.
But ASU owner Scott Lods says he will wait for the Commission’s final decision.
Currently, residential customers pay $47.50 per month.
ASU wants to gradually increase that rate to $85.18 a month by July 2018.
The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor Office recommended a final residential rate of $55.22 a month.
Some customers dispute the company’s position that it needs to increase fees to recover the cost of $5 million in improvements.