Possible rate hike sparks outrage with Palmetto Utilities customers

RICHLAND COUNTY,SC (WOLO)- Outrage in the Midlands after another water company is proposing to raise it’s prices.

Palmetto Utilities customers say they’re frustrated after getting a letter in the mail saying their rates are going up again.This time to $66.

“That’s ridiculous when we just had an increase in 2018,” resident Gail Barton-Ford said.

“I understand that a company needs to make a living, but making a killing, that’s totally different,” resident Paul Hensley said.

Back in 2013 the city of Columbia sold 11,000 customers to Palmetto Utilities. Those customers have been charged based on usage since then, but that could all soon change to the way Palmetto Utilities does things.

“75% of our customers are from the old Palmetto system and they have had flat rates for 30 something years,” President of Palmetto Utilities, Mark Dayday said.

Dayday says the increase comes from deferred expenses. He says this increase could be the last one customers see for several years.

“We’ve seen spectacular growth in our area and overtime that growth helps keep rates low,” Dayday said.

But for customers who aren’t used to a flat rate, that brings concern.

“There should be some kind of way they need to regulate it,” Barton-Ford said. “Or if you’re going to have it at one set price stop increasing it.”

The company has planned another meeting Wednesday starting at 6pm.  A hearing will happen in April to decide if customers will see an increase.

Categories: Local News, News, Richland