Some Pennichuck Water Customers Could See Rate Boost

Derry customers using one of Pennichuck Water Works’ subsidiaries will see a rate increase this year, while the other Pennichuck customers’ rate will remain flat.

John J. Patenaude, chief executive officer of Pennichuck, made the announcement last week in two separate letters to Acting Town Administrator Larry Budreau.

Patenaude wrote that Pennichuck Water Works has entered into a rate case settlement agreement with the Public Utilities Commission and the Office of the Consumer Advocate in relation to permanent rates. Pennichuck Water Works (PWW) requested a rate increase of 0.12 percent in the case filed in May 2013.

“The parties have agreed to forego the requested increase and maintain the current rates,” Patenaude wrote. The last increase was in 2010 and was 11.94 percent, based on the 2009 test year.

The other subsidiary is Pennichuck East Utility or PEU. PEU requested a rate increase of 9.97 percent in May 2013 and a step increase of 2.25 percent, according to a letter by Patenaude.

The settlement was for a rate increase of 9.91 percent and a step increase of 1.62 percent. The last rate increase for Derry for PEU was in 2007 at 17.19 percent, based on the 2006 test year.

Thomas Carrier, Deputy Director of Public Works, said the majority of Pennichuck’s Derry customers are with PWW and will not see an increase. Pennichuck East serves 341 households or 858 residents through the Farmstead Acres, Maple Hills and Oakwood water systems. “Those customers will see an increase,” Carrier said.

The PUC held hearings on the settlement agreement on May 20. If approved, the rate increase will go into effect July 1.

Both settlements are posted on the Public Utilities Commission Web site ( and on the company’s Web site ( under “Company Reports”).

Those wanting further information may call Patenaude at 913-2301.