Earlier this past spring, SPU had filed an application with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSCW) to increase water rates. The increase is necessary due to an 47.9% increase in gross plant investment (includes replacement of aged or damaged water main) and an 36.6% increase in operating expenses (includes increased pumping expenses, water testing requirements) since the last water rate was completed in 2015.
A Public Notice was included with the received November SPU bills informing customers of a November 30, 2021, PSCW public hearing on this application. The hearing was conducted, and the PSCW has now approved the new rate structure with overall increase of 20.85% effective December 31, 2021. The total increase in water revenues approved is $780,394.
Examples of the effect of the rate adjustments are:
Class meter size monthly cuft @ old rates @ new rates increase
Residential 5/8” 300 $16.01 $20.28 $4.27
Residential (ave) 5/8” 600 $21.14 $25.71 $4.57
Commercial 1” 625 $750.56 $899.42 $148.86
Commercial 2” 500 $555.35 $666.75 $111.40
The pre-December 31, 2021, rates had SPU average residential at the 3rd lowest cost of the 30 Dane County water systems. The new December 31, 2021, rates put SPU average residential at the 6th lowest cost of the 30 Dane County water systems.
Of the 96 similar Class AB water utilities in the state, pre-December 31,2021, rates had SPU average residential at the 11th lowest cost of all AB utilities in the state. The new December 31, 2021, rates put SPU average residential at the 24th lowest cost of the 96 AB utilities in the state.
The continued growth of the city and the increased costs to maintain a safe water system since the last water rate case in 2015 has contributed to this rate increase. SPU continues to work for the citizens of Sun Prairie to deliver and monitor safe and affordable drinking water.