CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state Public Service Commission ordered West Virginia American Water Company to continue several water-extension projects¬†in which it was previously involved.

Eight groups filed a complaint with the PSC in October 2011 after the organizations received a decommitment letter from WVAWC saying it would no longer financially support the public/private investments.

PSC spokesperson Susan Small said Monday’s order reverses that letter.

“The West Virginia American Water Company is required to continue to work with public entities to provide access to public water in areas that do not currently have it,” she said.

The commission said the company has an “obligation to continue to participate in technically and economically feasible extension projects proposed by the complainants.”

The water company was still reviewing the order Monday afternoon.

“The subject matter of today’s PSC ruling is of great importance to West Virginia American Water and our customers, and we are reviewing the order at this time,” WVAWC spokesperson Laura Jordan said in an email to MetroNews.

Small said the order doesn’t mean all the extension projects will be completed, but it compels the water utility to assist.

“(The projects) have to go through a design phase. They’ve got to get funding. This just says you can’t cancel all of these projects in a blanket format. You’ve got to go back and look at the projects and see which ones can continue,” Small said.

The groups that filed the complaint include: the regional development authority of Charleston-Kanawha County, the economic development authorities of Lewis and Webster counties, the public service districts from Oakvale Road, Lashmeet, New Haven and Jumping Branch-Nimitz, and the Putnam County Building Commission.

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  • flossrancher

    More government interference in business! Leave the water company alone and let the free market system take care of the problem. And we never asked for FEMA and their government-handout water here. We can take care of ourselves.

    • WVU_'82

      Tell me who is the competition for WVAWC? There is no free market for water service. The company is a monopoly providing an essential public service. That is why they are subject to government regulation.

  • Chris1529

    I think the time has come for a change in the management and structure of WVAWC. They do not serve the people in the correct manner.