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Shinnston looking to improve water system

According to Shinnston officials, the water system is fully operational once more after the recent leak was identified and fixed on June 13.
"We repaired it that night evening and it looks like our tank levels are back to normal, where we need them to be," Mayor Sam DeMarco said. "The levels are holding. It looks like we have everything under control but we're constantly looking at where we can find leaks.
The city is also looking to be proactive when it comes to preventing future leaks.
"We're in the process of upgrading our main line," DeMarco said. "That main line which we have a lot of issues with water breaks. It's the old cast iron line and we want to upgrade that to new PVC pipe."
The PVC pipe would drastically reduce the amount of leaks occurring in the system, an issue which has plagued the city of Shinnston over the past few years, resulting in water shut offs and boil water advisories.
However, the project has a cost. The city has approved an ordinance to increase the water rates.
"That rate increase is going to help us fund that and just our daily maintainence," DeMarco said.
The rate will increase 11.5% -- or $2.40 on average per customer -- at going level and then an 4.5% -- or $1.50 on average per customer -- post project.
According to the public notice, the proposed increased rates and charges will become effective July 24, 2014 unless otherwise ordered by the Public Service Commission.
The Commission shall review and approve or modify the increased rates only upon the filing of a petition within 30 days of the adoption
of the ordinance changing said rates or charges, by: (1) Any customer aggrieved by the changed rates or charges who presents to the Commission
a petition signed by not less than twenty-five percent of the customers served by such municipally operated public utility; or (2) Any customer who is served by a municipally operated public utility and who resides outside the corporate limits and who is affected by the change in said rates or charges and who presents to the Commission a petition alleging discrimination between customers within and without the municipal boundaries. Said petition shall be accompanied by evidence of discrimination; or (3) Any customer or group of customers who are affected by said change in rates who reside within the municipal boundaries and who present a petition to the Commission alleging discrimination between said customer or group of customers and other customers of the municipal utility. 
Said petition shall be accompanied by evidence of discrimination.
All petitions should be addressed to the Executive Secretary, Public Service Commission of West Virginia, 201 Brooks Street, P. O. Box 812, Charleston, West Virginia 25323.
A complete copy of the proposed rates, as well as a representative of the utility to provide any information requested concerning it, is available to all customers, prospective customers, or their agents at the offices of the City of Shinnston, 40 Main Street, Shinnston, West Virginia.
A copy of the proposed rates is available for public inspection at the office of the Executive Secretary of the Public Service Commission at 201 Brooks Street, P.O. Box 812, Charleston, West Virginia 25323.