State Rep. Sappey to testify with Chester County residents against water rate hikes at Nov. 10 hearing

HARRISBURG, Oct. 29 – State Rep. Christina Sappey, D-Chester, has planned an in-person event to support southern Chester County communities in testifying against Aqua Pennsylvania Inc.’s proposed water rate increases of over 17% at a telephonic public input hearing.

The in-person event hosted by Sappey and Rep. John Lawrence, to be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 10 at the Penn Township building in West Grove, is happening in response to the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission’s Oct. 21 decision to not hold in-person hearings and instead hold six virtual hearings to collect input from the public on Aqua’s proposed increases. The purpose of the in-person event is to assist seniors and people with technological difficulties who would still like to testify.

“Those without adequate access to the internet or comfort with technology deserve to be heard as well as those who do,” Sappey said.

Sappey made the initial request for a public hearing through a letter to the PUC on Oct. 6.

“Hundreds of constituents have contacted me expressing strong opposition to Aqua’s increase request,” Sappey wrote. “Many of them are seniors living on fixed incomes and are still recovering from the financial impact of the pandemic. The timing of this increase is egregious and unfair.”

After the virtual hearings were announced, Sappey and Lawrence, R-Chester/Lancaster, sent a second letter to the PUC requesting an in-person hearing for southern Chester County, but the PUC denied their request.

The increases would affect over 474,000 Pennsylvanians, including many in Chester County.

Those who wish to testify at the Penn Township building on Nov. 10 must RSVP by calling Sappey’s office at 484-200-8264 before 4 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 3.

Any residents that pay Aqua’s rates may participate in the telephonic PUC hearings on any of the following dates:

  • 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 8
  • 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 9
  • 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 10
  • 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 12

For those who wish to testify or listen from home, the deadline to sign up is 4 p.m. Friday, Nov. 5, which can be done by emailing or calling 412-565-3550 and providing the following information:

  • Your first and last name.
  • The date and time of the hearing at which you wish to testify.
  • The phone number you will be using to call into the hearing.
  • A phone number where you can be reached prior to the hearing.
  • Your email address.
  • If you require an interpreter to participate in the hearing, and the language of the interpreter.