Saturday, October 3, 2009

Water Rates to go up?!

Just when you thought the cost of living was unbearable, well you might have to dig even deeper into your pockets to cough up more money – that is if the Belize Water Services gets its way. The Public Utilities Commission, P.U.C., is considering a Full Tariff Review Proceeding application. In lay man’s terms, B.W.S. is asking for an increase in water rates. So brace up because the B.W.S. is applying for a whopping twenty-five percent increase.

The company says that it has invested heavily, some thirty million dollars over the past five years. This was done to implement a Customer Codes of Practice for transparency, computers, and to expand and refurbish assets, improve treatment plants, storage tanks and pumping stations. The company’s clientele now stands at around forty five thousand. It also says that the company has reached a point where it sustaining itself is in jeopardy due to economic factors since it does not earn enough to continue to provide the level of services to the growing population without help.

If it gets the approval for the increase notwithstanding low-income customers who use five hundred gallons or less per month would not be affected. The last time the company applied for an increase in rates was in April of 2004 when it received a seventeen percent increase. The P.U.C. has already begun to review the application since Thursday when they received it. That decision will be given at the end of a six month process. That would make the increase effective in April of 2010. The P.U.C. will hold a public meeting on October thirteenth at the Princess Hotel on this critical matter. (Taken off 7News Belize Website: )

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