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PUC denies Austin Water’s motion for rehearing

Thursday, February 25, 2016 by Nora Ankrum

The Public Utility Commission of Texas has denied the city of Austin’s motion for rehearing in a case involving rates for 46,000 Austin Water customers. In October, the PUC issued a ruling that rates be lowered for wholesale customers in four districts: North Austin Municipal Utility District No. 1, Northtown MUD, Wells Branch MD, and Travis County Water Control and Improvement District No. 10. Those customers had petitioned water rates that had gone into effect in 2013, and the PUC ruled that because Austin Water had failed to prove that the rates were “just and reasonable,” the utility must not only lower the rates but also refund the petitioners any amounts thus far collected in excess of the new lower rate. Now that the PUC has denied Austin Water’s motion for rehearing, the next move, if the city so chooses, is to challenge the decision in district court.

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