“When Citizens acquired the water utility in 2011, we knew rate increases would be necessary in order to upgrade a system that had been neglected for decades,” said Jeff Harrison, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. “The proposed low-income rate allows us to improve our water system while also keeping the financial needs of our customers top of mind.”
The company also plans to create a special financial assistance fund for water customers in need.
The petition filed with the IURC says Citizens has $49.5 million in capital needs every year for replacing water mains, improving treatment plants and replacing meters and fire hydrants.
The utility says people are using less water, pointing to a study that blames water-efficient appliances and people aiming to conserve water.
The petition also says Citizens has reduced executive compensation by $860,000. The list includes President and CEO Carey Lykins who is retiring July 1, as well as other executives who have already retired.
Officials said the newly announced Citizens Reservoir will help supply central Indiana with enough drinking water for years to come. The 88-acre reservoir is expected to be completed in 2020.