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Indiana OCC Suggests Lower Water Rate Increase

The Indiana Office of the Consumer Counselor has recommended slashing a rate increase proposed by the Indiana American Water Company.The company is seeking approval from the Utility Regulatory Commission for 46.8 million dollars in extra revenue. The money would be spent on maintaining and building infrastructure and would add about 11 dollars to monthly bills in southern Indiana.Anthony Swinger with the Consumer Counselor's office says his agency is recommending the company collect 22.6 million dollars from customers."We believe the utility would have the revenue that it needs to provide safe, reliable service to all of its customers at the level that we are recommending," he says. "The utility has made numerous efforts. We understand that, we acknowledge that."The opinion comes after about six months of research. The water company can issue a rebuttal in the next few weeks and cross-examine the office's witnesses in December. A final decision from the regulatory commission is expected early next year.

Gabe Bullard is the director of news and editorial strategy.