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SAN TAN VALLEY — Johnson Utilities customers will get an opportunity to let their feelings known before state utility regulators decide whether to allow their rates to increase.

The Arizona Corporation Committee announced six public hearings on the water and wastewater rate increases proposed by Johnson Utilities, which serves much of San Tan Valley and parts of Florence. The purpose of the hearings is to allow commissioners to hear issues, complaints and input from the customers.

The hearings will be spread out over two days. On Feb. 20, sessions will be held from 8 to 10 a.m., noon to 2 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at County Supervisor Mike Goodman’s San Tan office, 33622 N. Mountain Vista Blvd. On Feb. 21, the sessions will be held at the same times but will be at Central Arizona College’s San Tan Campus, 3736 E. Bella Vista Road, Rooms A100 and A101.

While the commissioners will take in all the comments made by the public, they will not be able to answer any questions during the hearings.

If they were to be approved, fees for water service would increase 23.6 percent, leaving customers with a water bill that would, on average, be about $36 per month. Currently, water users’ bills average about $29 monthly.

For wastewater services, the increase would be 17.6 percent. According to the application, wastewater customers’ bills would be slightly more than $48 per month, up from the current rate of about $41.

Johnson Utilities increased fees during a test year that ended on June 30. The company now seeks to make the increases permanent.

According to the filing with the ACC, Johnson Utilities lost money over the year ending June 30. Records show the utility company reports needing an increase of $2.6 million in the water division and slightly more than $3 million in the wastewater operations. The company also is seeking a decrease in its amount paid to the Central Arizona Groundwater Replenishment District.

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