: News

Price Hike, Then Regulation For Water In Alexandria

Play associated audio
The Virginia American Water Company plans to increase rates 22 percent for its private water service in Alexandria.
Michael Pope
The Virginia American Water Company plans to increase rates 22 percent for its private water service in Alexandria.

By Michael Pope

Alexandria is one of the only localities in Virginia that has private water service, an arrangement that dates back to the 1840s when the city left the District of Columbia and returned to Virginia.

The way current utility regulation works in the commonwealth, the Virginia American Water Company can actually raise rates before the State Corporation Commission approves hike. Water company spokesman David Barney acknowledges that the company hit customers with a 22 percent increase in 2008 even though they were eventually only approved for a 10 percent increase.

"All of our customers were refunded the difference," says Barney. "It's not like we took the money and they never saw the money back."

Now the water company has filed notice it plans to increase rates again, this time for a 22 percent increase. Alexandria Councilwoman Del Pepper says she thinks the company should have to wait for regulatory approval.

"This is a heck of a way to run a water company or any kind of a company," says Pepper. "I can't imagine other groups getting away with something like that."

The new rate will go into effect on August 13.

NPR

Encore: 'Future Shock' 40 Years Later

Future Shock by Alvin Toffler was a huge sensation when it was published in 1970. The book perfectly captured the angst of that time and prepared society for more changes to come.
NPR

In Prison, The Passion That Drove A Yogurt-Maker To Arson Still Burns

The yogurt entrepreneur who set fire to his factory remains in prison, but he's in better spirits now. "He's dreaming again," says his wife.
NPR

Woman Asks Trump About Replacing TSA's 'Heebeejabis' With Veterans

"We are looking at that. We're looking at a lot of things," Donald Trump said Thursday, before quickly pivoting to border security.
NPR

'Future Shock' Author Alvin Toffler Dies at 87

Toffler's warnings about 'information overload' and the accelerating pace of change in modern society made his seminal 1970 book a best-seller in the U.S. and around the world.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.