The public hearings for the fee schedules happened in early October.
Guam – GWA’s new proposed fee schedule, which would increase fees associated with new and existing water customers, is now drawing criticism from inside the CCU putting the future of the schedule in jeopardy.
The new fee schedule that was introduced by GWA last month, has met criticism from the CCU as a whole.
“I think the commissioners, I value their concern. They’re concerned that we just don’t increase the fees and increase the rates and therefore we end up with a windfall and therefore we don’t recover costs,” said Duenas.
Some of the concerns from commissioners come from George Bamba, who wrote a letter, detailing his opinion with the fee schedule on his official Facebook page. Bamba’s main concern is the methodology for how GWA determined the charges in the schedule. Bamba says, ” If the methodology is faulty from the beginning, then it stands to reason that any conclusions reached are ultimately unreliable. Bamba refers to page nine of the cost of service study that requires five customer service representatives collectively to research one account. He also questions GWA’s projected revenue from the new schedules. Bamba says that the number GWA came up with does not show up in GWA’s approved budget, leading Bamba to believe that “GWA’s methodology is not appropriate and simply builds a case for increasing GWA’s revenues whether they are necessary or not.
Duenas, however says that the PUC mandated the CCU to create a new schedule.
“They said you need to update your fees so you can recover the costs, whatever it costs to reconnect some customers after they don’t pay and they terminate their account. Whatever that costs has to be reflected in a charge to them, that’s not a rate, that’s just a fee,” said Duenas.
Duenas has maintained that the new schedule does not affect all customers, only customers that don’t pay their bills or new customers. But at the public hearings for the fee schedules back in early October, Dededo mayor Melissa Savares pointed out that the new fee schedule greatly increases the fees for customers who are moving. Regardless, the much-debated schedule will be decided upon at a CCU work session later this month.