Idaho Public Utilities Commission
Case No. CCH-W-12-01, Order No. 32610
August 9, 2012
Contact: Gene Fadness (208) 334-0339, 890-2712
Idaho Falls water utility wants to increase rates
Workshop is Aug. 21 for Country Club Hills customers
Staff from the Idaho Public Utilities Commission will be in Idaho Falls August 21 to conduct a workshop for the customers of Country Club Hills Utilities, a water company serving about 150 households southeast of Idaho Falls.
The utility is seeking a 32 percent increase to offset yearly operating losses and to establish a capital replacement fund to pay for system deficiencies and water service problems. The company’s president, Mike Groth of Idaho Falls, claims the company does not have a capital replacement fund, which is required by the state Department of Environmental Quality, because “of the negative income range in which it currently operates.” If major components of the water system fail, the utility “has no method to pay for the repairs other than Mr. Groth’s personal credit,” according to documents filed with the commission.
County Club customers currently pay $17 per month for the first 30,000 gallons. Under Country Club’s proposal, flat monthly rates would increase from $17 to $25 for use up to 15,000 gallons per month (gpm). Use between 15,000 and 25,000 gpm would be assessed at 60 cents for every thousand gallons. Use of 25,000 gpm or more would be 70 cents per 1,000 gallons. The company proposes the inverted block rates to encourage water conservation.
The commission suspended the company’s application for up to six months to consider the application and audit financial records.
Commission staff will be in Idaho Falls on Tuesday, Aug. 21, at 7 p.m. to conduct a workshop at the Skyline Activity Center, 1575 N. Skyline Road in Idaho Falls.
The purpose of the workshop is to provide an opportunity for customers to hear a staff presentation regarding the application and take questions. The commission is also taking written comments on the proposal through Sept. 17.
The company’s last increase was on June 1, 2005, when the monthly flat fee was increased from $14 to $17 and the commodity charge increased from 35 cents for every thousand gallons used above 30,000 gpm to 60 cents.
Documents related to this case can be viewed on the commission’s Website at www.puc.idaho.gov. Click on the water icon, then on “Open Water Cases,” and scroll down to Case No. CCH-W-12-01.
Comments are accepted via e-mail from the commission’s Website. Click on "Comments & Questions About a Case." Fill in the above case number and enter your comments. Comments can also be mailed to P.O. Box 83720, Boise, ID 83720-0074 or faxed to (208) 334-3762.