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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: February 7, 2023 11:06 AM
From: Representative Christina D. Sappey
To: All House members
Subject: Water and Wastewater Ratepayer Bill of Rights
Concern has been raised by my constituents regarding the process when municipal water and wastewater authorities are sold and acquired by public utilities.  They feel they are given little to no consideration in the process and I agree. Residential water customers deserve to be heard and to be able to provide direct input on these matters.
To ensure ratepayer fairness in this process, my legislation will establish a water and wastewater ratepayer bill of rights.  This comprehensive measure will require selling authorities to conduct referendums for ratepayers to voice their concerns on water and wastewater utility acquisitions.  Further, these utilities will be required to publish an annual report to include average residential amounts billed.  This will prevent utilities from inflating service costs to consumers.  Finally, important notifications of potential rate increases and information on participating in the process will be provided to all existing customers.
Utilities must be held accountable.  These facilities are in business to serve residents and their families safely at reasonable costs.  Our utility systems have a responsibility to listen to ratepayers, sharing information to keep them informed as to the services they receive.
I hope that you will join me in creating a better, more transparent system that guarantees ratepayers their rights.
This bill was previously introduced as House Bill 144, PN 110 during the 2021-2022 Legislative Session.  The following members co-sponsored the bill: Sanchez, Otten, A. Davis, T. Davis, Freeman, Millard, Ciresi and Madden. 

Introduced as HB1205