Some Harrison County residents will see increase in water rate

Published: Nov. 17, 2021 at 5:21 PM EST
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CLARKSBURG, W.Va (WDTV) - The Harrison County commission agreed Wednesday morning to increase water rates by 4.4% for the Greater Harrison county public service district customers.

Commissioner David Hinkle said the county commission is responsible for setting the rates for the greater Harrison County PSD due to its size.

“We’re the ones that make that financial decision whereas with the other public service districts they can go straight to the state PSC and that’s where they get their rate increase so for us, we have a lot to look at,” said Hinkle.

The state supreme court affirmed last year that the Greater Harrison PSD meets the threshold of 4,500 or more customers after a customer challenged the method the PSD and commission were using to count water and sewer customers.

Hinkle says the commission doesn’t have the staff the state has to look into rate increases.

“That’s just part of the things that it makes it hard for us to make a decision when you need more facts,” said Hinkle.

Officials say the last rate increase was in 2019.

Zachary Dobbins, a certified public accountant working with the PSD, gave the commission the reason why.

“The reason for this increase is to cover a $25,000 truck replacement fund, to cover the increase in o[peration] and m[aintenance] associated with the nutter fort rate increase. We recently hired in the middle of the year an additional person to work in the office and, that additional payroll is billed in there,” said Dobbins.

Dobbins also said the PSD was operating at a deficit of about $78,000.

“We’ll see how they can work with it but I think they need to come back with a little more information so we can make better decision for the citizens,” said Hinkle.

The increase will begin January 5, 2022.

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