CEWR In Action Against CLWSC Once Again

 
 
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Water Rates
Utility
Ratepayer

Industrys:
Consumer
Non-profit

Location:
Spring Branch - Texas - US

SPRING BRANCH, Texas - April 19, 2014 - PRLog -- As most of you are aware, CLWSC filed for another rate increase in October of last year that became effective on December 2nd.  The increase is for an average of 23.1%.  This is coming on the heels of the ruling on the previous case where in 2010 they filed for the 71% rate increase.  This new rate filing for 23.1 % comes as no surprise as Geoff Miller and the previous CEWR team of volunteers were very successful in keeping CLWSC from increasing rates up to the 71% level.  They kept rates down in the 33% range which is what we were all paying before the recent December increase.  If the CEWR team had not acted on behalf of ratepayers to protest and hire experienced professionals, then CLWSC would have put the full 71% increase in effect starting in April 2011. Consequently, if you do the math, customers avoided paying an additional 25% for water to CLWSC from April 2011 until December 2013, a period of over 31 months.  Additionally, we are receiving a small rebate credit because the final TCEQ ruling was for rates lower than the 38% interim rates we had been paying since October 2010. That amounts to a direct savings of around $800 for most of you reading this e-mail.  A special thank you is extended to Geoff and the previous CEWR team for their diligent efforts and thanks to all who supported the protest with their donations of experience, time, and money.

Unfortunately, CLWSC is back for more.  The following is a recap of the actions taken by the new CEWR volunteers and the current status of the regulatory proceedings for the rate increase:

· CEWR has reconstituted itself with 10 members, 4 of which are from the previous CEWR team.

·  Approximately 1,450 of you signed a petition to protest the new rates.

· The protest petitions were filed with the TCEQ February 26th, several days before the deadline.

· CEWR has received verbal confirmation that we will have official status in the case.

· CEWR volunteers have met with Senator Campbell and her office.  We are keeping them apprised of the status of the protest process.

· CEWR has conferred with the City of Bulverde and has reviewed their settlement with CLWSC.

· CEWR is following other rate cases and the status of cases moving from TCEQ oversight to the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC).

· CEWR is in contact with OPUC, the group at the PUC that represents the residential users of water.

· CEWR has retained the same attorney used in the last case.

Expected next steps:

1. State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH) to meet in May and set a date for the Pre-Hearing Conference for the case.

2.  Pre-Hearing Conference expected in June-July time frame according to TCEQ officials.

3. CEWR plans to attempt negotiating a settlement with CLWSC for lower rates.

Ratepayers may check the status of our case by visiting www.cewr.net (http://www.cewr.net) for the latest developments, to direct questions to the CEWR team, and/or to donate to the cause.
End
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Tags:Water Rates, Utility, Ratepayer
Industry:Consumer, Non-profit
Location:Spring Branch - Texas - United States
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