Hike service

Citing “self-inflicted service failures,” officials are calling on the state to reject the 20% hike for Hudson Valley Water Co.

Elected officials called on state regulators to deny a 20% rate increase to the Hudson Valley Water Company, citing failure to follow recommendations from a 2020 investigation.

In their denial request, Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan, State Senator Michelle Hinchey and Assemblyman Kevin Cahill also sent 20 new comments during a hearing on the company which was held June 23 at Woodstock Elementary School.

Hudson Valley Water Company serves residences in West Hurley, Pine Hill, Boiceville, Rosendale and Mount Marion.

Customers have complained of having to buy bottled water, having to deal with unreachable customer service, frequent breakdowns and being threatened with termination.

“As Ulster County Executive, I will use my office to advocate on behalf of residents and hold utility companies accountable for their business practices,” Ryan said in a statement. “Ulster County residents have a right to clean water and responsive customer service, and we cannot allow the Hudson Valley Water Company to be paid more while delaying basic needs.”

Hinchey agreed. “We oppose this rate increase for the Hudson Valley Water Company, which for decades has made no effort to provide safe and reliable water service to members of our community,” he said. she declared. “No customer should bear the financial burden of repairing self-inflicted service outages by the Hudson Valley Water Company. As a State, we have enshrined the right to drinking water in our Constitution. It is incumbent on us now, as custodians of this document, to ensure that all New Yorkers have safe drinking water and to hold bad actors like Mr. Fuller accountable for his negligence and neglect of his responsibilities. .

Hinchey has drafted several pieces of legislation to address private water companies, including the Small Water Utility Transparency Act, which increases fines for violations and gives the Public Service Commission, Department of Conservation Environment and the State Comptroller’s Office increased audit powers.

Cahill said it’s clear from the June 23 hearing that the Hudson Valley Water Company hasn’t made the infrastructure investment necessary to justify the rate increase.

“In addition to calling for the rejection of this hefty hike, my office along with Ryan County Executive, Senator Hinchey and the Utilities Bill will continue to work with PSC to ensure that the Hudson Valley Water Company is held accountable,” Cahill said.