Fayette County

Council approves water rate increase settlement with Kentucky American Water

The Lexington Urban County Council gave final approval Tuesday to a settlement agreement between the city and Kentucky American Water company on a proposed water rate increase, but details of the settlement will not be released until Wednesday.

The settlement agreement was put on the council’s agenda at a meeting Tuesday afternoon and then passed later that night at a council meeting. The council gave it, and all resolutions that were scheduled to receive first reading on Tuesday night, two readings. The council’s last meeting before it goes on its summer break is Thursday.

City officials said they could not release details of the water rate settlement until after a final meeting between city and water officials on Wednesday morning.

The settlement agreement is between all parties in the water rate case. In addition to the city and water company, the state attorney general and Community Action Council of Kentucky are also parties in the water rate case. They must also approve the settlement.

Any settlement agreement must be approved by the state Public Service Commission.

Kentucky American Water, a private company that provides water to people in 11 Central Kentucky counties, filed for a more than 15 percent rate increase in January. If approved by the commission, this rate increase will be its fifth since 2007.

The company had requested the water rate increase to recoup more than $79 million investment in various improvement projects, including a $15 million water filtration building on Richmond Road.

In 2013, the commission, which must approve all rate increases for private utility companies, granted Kentucky American a 10 percent rate increase. Two years earlier, in 2010, the company was given a 29 percent increase. The company received a 17 percent bump in 2009 and a 15 percent increase in 2007.

Beth Musgrave: 859-231-3205, @HLCityhall