FISHER, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Illinois American Water President Bruce Hauk today announced the Company’s acquisition of the Village of Fisher’s water and wastewater systems. The purchase of the system adds approximately 850 new water and wastewater customers to the Company’s customer base in the Champaign County District and serves a population of nearly 2,000 residents.
The Village of Fisher Board voted in favor of the sale in July 2017. The Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) approved the sale for $6.8 million on March 7, 2018.
“We look forward to investing in the Village of Fisher and ensuring quality water and reliable wastewater service to our new customers,” said Hauk.
Village of Fisher Mayor Michael Bayler also supports the acquisition. He said, “We are looking forward to Illinois American Water joining our community and helping us meet our water and wastewater needs. Their knowledge and ability to provide reliable service to our residents is an investment in our public health and economic future.”
Illinois American Water will invest $2.9 million in the first five years of ownership including security upgrades, meter replacements, wastewater plant improvements for regulatory compliance, and inflow and infiltration upgrades.
According to Dave Farrar, sr. manager of field operations and production for Illinois American Water’s Champaign County District, the company will also repair and paint the Fisher water tower. Farrar, a resident of Fisher, said, “We are committed to keeping the Fisher water tower painted orange to show community pride for residents and visitors of Fisher. The improvements planned will also enhance service, public health and fire protection to Fisher.”
New customers will soon receive an Illinois American Water welcome packet in the mail. This packet includes information about online account management, billing, payment options and more. A payment drop box will be placed at the Fisher water treatment plant located at 110 West Front Street in Fisher. Payments will be picked up regularly.
The appraisal process used for the Fisher water and wastewater systems was conducted under the supervision of the ICC and established as part of the Illinois Water Systems Viability Act. According to Hauk, this law gives communities an alternative to value their water and/or wastewater system when considering being acquired by an investor-owned water utility. He said, “Previous law only allowed the investor-owned water or sewer utility to pay the original cost minus depreciation to acquire a small system, public or private. Because of this, systems were deprived of receiving adequate value for their system.”
The Village of Fisher will be incorporated into Illinois American Water’s Champaign County District, which currently serves residents in Champaign, Urbana, Sadorus, Savoy, St. Joseph, Bondville and Pesotum.
About Illinois American Water - Illinois American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 1.3 million people. American Water also operates a customer service center in Alton and a quality control and research laboratory in Belleville. With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse U.S. publicly traded water and wastewater utility company. The company employs more than 6,900 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and market-based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to an estimated 15 million people in 46 states and Ontario, Canada. American Water provides safe, clean, affordable and reliable water services to our customers to make sure we keep their lives flowing. For more information, visit amwater.com and follow American Water on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.