Decision Approves Utility’s Final Infrastructure Improvement Plan Filing
Washington Water has received approval from the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (Commission) to increase annual revenues by $2.125 million, effective July 28, 2023, to reflect upgrades made to water system infrastructure and higher operating costs.
Major investments made in Washington Water’s systems include:
- Three new treatment plants to remove iron and manganese, naturally occurring arsenic, or lead and copper
- Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system remote monitoring software improvements
- 7,200 feet of new 4-, 8-, and 12-inch water main to replace aging pipes, reduce leaks, and enhance reliability
- New booster pump station to support higher elevations
- Tank coating upgrade to extend the life of aging tank
- Customer Care software conversion to enhance customer service support
- Electrical and booster pump upgrades to improve fire flow
- A new well that can produce up to 275 gallons of water per minute
Additionally, the Commission authorized funding—a portion of which is expected to be recovered in future years—for conservation programs, education, and outreach for the utility to help consumers use water more efficiently.
With this filing, Washington Water has begun taking steps to combine the East Pierce system’s rates with that of the rest of the utility. The utility believes that a single, statewide rate structure for all Washington Water customers in the future should help stabilize rates across the entire customer base and reduce the cost impact of improvements made in each system for customers.
"We take our responsibility to provide quality, service, and value seriously, and fulfilling that means making the infrastructure investments needed to provide high-quality, reliable water service long-term while operating efficiently to keep costs down," said Martin A. Kropelnicki, Chairman and CEO. "We appreciate the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission’s diligent review of our operations, costs, and service, so that rates accurately reflect the costs of providing service and so we can stay focused on our customers, communities, and firefighters."
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