Members Urged to Take Action on WSSC Bill by Dec. 7

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AOBA Opposes Bill No: MC/PG 101-17 – WSSC Service Rates; Members Urged to Take Action

This bill would authorize the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) to adopt water and sewer rates that vary by customer class.  Current law requires that service rates be uniform for all types of customers.

 
The bill number of the legislation is MC/PG 101-17, and may be viewed at the following link: MC/PG 101-17

We urge AOBA members to submit letters in opposition to this legislation by Dec. 7, 2016.   The hearing will be Wednesday, Dec. 7 at  7:00 p.m. - 3rd Floor Hearing Room, Stella Werner Council Office Bldg., 100 Maryland Ave., Rockville, MD 20850

BACKGROUND

AOBA opposes this legislation because it is unnecessary and would give WSSC authority to impose service rates that discriminate based on customer type.  We believe that rates should be based on the volume of water used – not who the customers are.

We recognize that WSSC’s current rate structure, with increasing rates applying to all water usage, is unfair and needs to be replaced.  WSSC is currently studying alternate rate options, with a goal of implementing a new rate structure by July 1, 2018.

However, this legislation is not needed for WSSC to implement a new rate structure.  WSSC has historically applied one rate system to all customers, as is also the case with water systems served by Baltimore City, and Arlington, Anne Arundel, Fairfax and Howard counties, and the cities of Alexandria and Frederick.

 Authorizing the WSSC to adopt rates based on classes of customers could cause significant cost shifts among types of customers and result in substantial rate increases for small businesses.  Why should a small business using 150 gallons of water daily be charged more than a residential customer using the same amount?

For these reasons AOBA urges your opposition to MC/PG 101-17. For further info, contact Ron Wineholt, AOBA Vice President of Government Affairs, at 301-261-1460 or rwineholt@aoba-metro.org .