A Texas administrative law judge has suspended the effective date of Nov. 1 for Liberty Utilities’ proposed rate change.

This means East Texas customers will not see their wastewater service rates go up to the proposed rate on that date. However, the utility company still could request interim rates.

Judge Susan E. Goodson suspended the rates in an order signed Tuesday.

She also said the company’s application for a rate/tariff change remained deficient and incomplete, according to the order.

She gave Liberty Utilities until Nov. 14 to submit an amended application and/or notice that corrects the problems.

The Public Utility Commission staff then has until Nov. 30 to file a recommendation and proposed procedural schedule, if appropriate, based on the amended application.

The judge did not address the commission staff’s recommendation to refer the issue to the State Office of Administrative Hearings.

In September, Liberty Utilities proposed rate changes that would more than triple some customers’ monthly wastewater bills by next March.

More than 1,100 ratepayers have filed protests with the Public Utility Commission of Texas regarding the company’s proposed rate increase.



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