New WSSC Budget Becomes Effective July 1

Rates Continue to Fund Infrastructure Inspections and Renewal

| News Release

OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS AND COMMUNITY RELATIONS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Laurel – June 27, 2013:The budget for the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC), approved in May by the Prince George’s and Montgomery County Councils, goes into effect Monday, July 1, 2013. The new $1.45 billion operating and capital budget includes a 7.25 percent rate increase that will, among other things, pay for critical inspection, reconstruction and renewal of the water and sewer infrastructure.

The rate increase will add approximately $5.05 per month to the bill of a customer who uses 210 gallons of water per day. The budget will allow for the rehabilitation of 51 miles of water main and 12 miles of sewer lines. In addition, the large water pipe rehabilitation program will be extended in FY'14 to begin inspection of the 68 miles of 36 and 42 inch Pre-stressed Concrete Cylinder Pipe (PCCP).

"The councils agreed to a budget that considers both WSSC’s needs and those of the public we serve, while aligning with our mission to provide high-quality drinking water and treat wastewater in an environmentally and financially responsible way,” said Jerry N. Johnson, General Manager/CEO. “While I recognize this continues a trend of asking more from our customers, I can assure you that we are constantly looking for ways to carry out our important work in the most strategic and budget conscious way possible.”

The Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fee (BRF) passed by the Maryland Legislature in 2012 will remain $5 per month. WSSC collects the BRF, commonly referred to as the “flush tax,” on behalf of the state as a separate item on WSSC’s quarterly customer bills. The Maryland Department of Environment (MDE) uses the revenue to fund improvements to wastewater treatment plants owned by utilities throughout the state, including WSSC.

The “flush tax” measure also includes a financial hardship exemption provision. To qualify for the exemption, residential customers must meet certain criteria. Those who qualify for an exemption must re-certify annually. To find additional information or apply for the exemption go to Bay Fee Exemption Information or call (301) 206-4001.

The new budget and rates will take effect on July 1, 2013.

For 100 years, WSSC has proudly served the citizens of Prince George’s and Montgomery counties – providing drinking water that has always met strict Safe Drinking Water Act standards and protecting the environment through vital water resource recovery services. Our vision is to be THE world-class water utility, where excellent products and services are always on tap.

 

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