AARP PA Delivers 5,000+ Signatures Opposing Proposed Water Rate Hikes

Posted on 06/12/24

AARP PA delivered more than 5,000 petition signatures to the Pennsylvania Utility Commission urging a halt to the proposed water rate increase for Pennsylvania American Water customers.

AARP PA State Director Bill Johnston-Walsh descended upon Harrisburg’s Capitol Complex on Tuesday afternoon to deliver the petitions at the PUC offices, lending a voice to 5,278 families from 37 counties in Northeast, Central, Southeast and Western parts of the Commonwealth who say they cannot afford another rate increase.

“We recognize the financial strain PAWC’s latest hikes would place on older adults in moderate and fixed-income households,” said Johnston-Walsh. “Such increases disproportionately burden individuals with limited incomes, potentially forcing them to choose between basic necessities like medication, food, and utilities.”

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) is currently considering a proposal from Pennsylvania American Water (PAW) that would raise water and wastewater rates for residential customers by approximately $203.9 million. The proposed increase will raise charges for PAW water customers on average $17.60 each month, or about $211 a year.

The new rate proposal also increases the yearly residential fixed customer charge – a charge you pay before you use a drop of water - from $17.50 to $20 for water customers, and from $14.30 to $20 for wastewater customers for a total increase of $98.40 a year.

“Utility rates are an essential pocketbook issue for Pennsylvania residents 50-plus and their families,” added Johnston-Walsh, “The PAWC’s proposed rate hike would be felt throughout many Pennsylvania communities as the utility serves 418 communities in 37 counties and comes on top of a 76 percent increase last year that impacted 681,707 water and 97,585 wastewater customers.”

AARP Pennsylvania advocates for affordable access to essential services to safeguard the economic security and well-being of older adults across the commonwealth, including the 5,278 people who signed our petition to stop the water rate hikes. Escalating utility costs exacerbate the challenges of older Pennsylvanians, many of whom are already grappling with rising healthcare expenses and other essential needs.


About AARP
AARP is the nation's largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering Americans 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to the more than 100 million Americans 50-plus and their families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also works for individuals in the marketplace by sparking new solutions and allowing carefully chosen, high-quality products and services to carry the AARP name. As a trusted source for news and information, AARP produces the nation's largest circulation publications, AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visitñol or follow @AARP, @AARPenEspañol and @AARPadvocates on social media.

This story is provided by AARP Pennsylvania. Visit the AARP Pennsylvania page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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