Wed | Sep 19, 2018

Increase in water rate for sections of Spanish Town and St James

Published:Tuesday | January 23, 2018 | 12:00 AM

The Can-Cara Development Limited (CDL) got the green light to increase its water rate by 27 per cent, and sewerage rate by 15 per cent, which is expected to take effect February. The Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) has, however, indicated that it has taken note of water-quality issues that customers have raised.

In a release that the OUR issued yesterday, the agency said that customers in western Spanish Town, St Catherine, as well as the Meadows of Irwin community in St James, who are serviced by the small water provider, are expected to be affected by the increase.

In arriving at the decisions on the new rates, the OUR said it considered CDL's proposed rates were all within the existing rates and charges for comparable services offered by the island's primary water utility, the National Water Commission. Further, the regulator, in its review, did not find the proposed rates to be unreasonable and, therefore, had no objection to the increases.

"The approved rates are in keeping with the OUR's current practice to grant a non-objection to such rates when proposed by small water and sewerage service providers. CDL's miscellaneous charges, which cover a number of connection and reconnection services, were also adjusted," the release said.

"In light of the complaints by customers, the utility company determined, among other things, that CDL is to, within three months, submit a comprehensive report on the reason for the nightly service disruptions in Magil Palms,

St Catherine. The report is to indicate the measures and timelines within which corrective actions will be taken to resolve the issues resulting in the disruption."

It continued, "CDL is to, within three months, develop and submit to the regulator a documented procedure outlining the activities to be undertaken to disconnect a sewer main. The policy is to also indicate how any material from the disconnection exercise is disposed of, as well as measures to ensure that the work area does not pose a hazard to residents."