Illinois American Water
announces reduction in rates for Lincoln customers
Effective January 2017,
residential customers using 4,500 gallons per month will
see a decrease of about $2.72 per month
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[December 19, 2016]
- Following an 11-month review, the Illinois Commerce Commission
(ICC) issued an order adjusting rates for Illinois American Water.
Ongoing enhancement and maintenance of the company’s water and
wastewater infrastructure to ensure reliable treatment and delivery
systems were the main drivers behind the rate change request filed
on Jan. 21, 2016. Included in the rate change request was
approximately $342 million in infrastructure investments across
Illinois that was not previously reflected in rates.
“Periodic rate adjustments allow us to continue making critical
investments in water plants, pumps and pipelines that help to
enhance quality, service reliability, and fire protection for
customers,” said Gabe Bowden, operations superintendent for the
Lincoln District. “At times, adjustments can be made to decrease
rates. Reliable water service is essential to everyday life and a
community’s strong economy.”
Illinois American Water President Bruce Hauk added the company has
worked to control costs, reducing operating expenses by about 3
percent since the last rate order, while providing customers with
nationally- recognized service. Illinois American Water received the
J.D. Power award for ranking “Highest in Customer Satisfaction among
Water Utilities in the Midwest” according to J.D. Power’s 2016 Water
Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction StudySM. The utility also
achieved the highest score in the region for price and
communications. Hauk said, “Customer satisfaction is a top priority
for our team. J.D. Power’s recognition of our team reinforces our
efforts for continuous improvement so we can provide quality service
at a fair price.”
The new rates resulting from the order are expected to take effect
Jan. 1, 2017. The last change in base rates occurred over four years
ago in 2012. Illinois American Water cannot change base rates
without ICC approval.
The company estimates, pending final approval from the ICC staff, a
residential customer with a
5/8-inch meter in the company’s Lincoln District using 4,500 gallons
of water per month will pay about 9 cents less per day, or $2.72
less per month. The monthly bill will be approximately $34.38
(excludes fire protection charges, municipal taxes and franchise
fees, which vary by community). Customers will continue to receive
quality, reliable water service at a good value.
Bowden, local investments included replacing and
installing fire hydrants, valves, meters and
approximately 1.5 miles of water main. Also included was
the construction of a new operations and distribution
building at 311 Limit Street in Lincoln. The building
provides an enhanced environment to support operations.
The 9,800 sq. ft. facility includes an improved customer
service area; expanded equipment storage and maintenance
garage with three garage bays; and dedicated operations
and maintenance areas. Upgrades were also completed to
the South Water Treatment Plant to replace 8, 12 and
16-inch plant piping that was originally installed over
35 years ago.
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The need to upgrade water and sewer systems is a national challenge. In 2013,
the American Society of Civil Engineers said an estimated $1 trillion in capital
spending would be needed across the nation over 25 years to replace thousands of
miles of pipe, upgrade treatment plants and comply with stricter water quality
standards. Illinois American Water is addressing this challenge.
Illinois American Water’s rates are based on the costs of providing water and
sewer service as reviewed and approved by the ICC. While many municipally-owned
water systems are able to cover costs with taxes, fees and other revenue sources
as a way to keep water bills lower, investor-owned, regulated water utilities
are required to recover all costs through water rates charged on the customer’s
Customers will receive communication further explaining the rate change.
Customers needing assistance paying their water bills can access the company’s
H2O Help to Others program. The Salvation Army administers this program.
Customers are urged to contact their local Salvation Army if they need
assistance. Information can also be found at
information about the J.D. Power 2016 Water Utility Residential Customer
Satisfaction StudySM visit
About Illinois American Water
Illinois American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AW), is the
largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and
reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 1.2 million people.
American Water also operates a customer service center in Alton and a quality
control and research laboratory in Belleville.
Illinois American Water ranked “Highest in Customer Satisfaction with Water
Utilities in the Midwest" according to J.D. Power’s 2016 Water Utility
Residential Customer Satisfaction StudySM.
American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse publicly traded
U.S. water and wastewater utility company. Marking its 130th anniversary this
year, the company employs 6,700 dedicated professionals who provide regulated
and market-based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to an
estimated 15 million people in 47 states and Ontario, Canada. More information
can be found by visiting www.amwater.com.
[Karen L. Cotton
Manager, External Affairs
Illinois American Water]