Connecticut Attorney General's Office

Press Release

Attorney General Disappointed DPUC Failed To Further Decrease Aquarion Water Rate Increase

September 8, 2010

            Attorney General Richard Blumenthal said today he is disappointed that the Department of Utility Control’s (DPUC) final decision failed to further reduce Aquarion Water’s rate increase request.

            Blumenthal said that the 11.3 percent rate hike -- which the DPUC slashed from the 24 percent the company initially requested -- is still too high. Blumenthal had called on the DPUC to cut the rate increase to zero.

            Blumenthal urged DPUC to carefully monitor Aquarion’s staffing to assure it does not lay off workers in the wake of such a large rate increase -- as Connecticut Water Company recently did.

            “I am disappointed that the DPUC approved such a large increase -- 11.3 percent -- when consumers and small businesses are struggling,” Blumenthal said. “DPUC did the right thing -- heeding my call to slash the company’s original request for a 24 percent increase -- but it should have cut deeper, all the way to zero.

“This hike is another drag consumers and businesses already coping with the toughest economy in decades. Utilities should share the struggles of their customers, learning like them to do with more with less. 

“I urge DPUC to vigilantly and vigorously monitor the company’s staffing, assuring fulfillment of its commitments under the final decision. Layoffs would be unacceptable given the size of the rate increase.

            “My office will review the final decision and continue fighting utility rate hikes that add to consumers’ and business’ burdens.”