TEGA CAY — Tega Cay citizens want their money back.
The six-member Tega Cay Water Citizen Advisory Council petitioned the South Carolina Public Service Commission on Wednesday to have water rate increases in 2010 and 2013 “rescinded and refunded.”
“The customers did not get the service they paid for,” group leader Linda Stevenson said.
The group submitted petitions as individual customers of Tega Cay Water Service, rather than submitting as a group, which would necessitate legal representation. The idea is that increases of almost 14 percent in 2010, then 33 percent last year were granted at least in part to pay for maintenance and improvements that either didn’t materialize, or didn’t go far enough to prevent a series of sewage spills into Lake Wylie.
Members argue that recent wastewater spills show the system is not being adequately maintained or improved. The state Department of Health and Environmental Control on Monday listed a variety of environmental infractions in a consent order that ordered the company to pay a $136,000 fine.
Stevenson admits she and other members aren’t aware of any precedent for a company paying back approved rate increases. Increases were approved by the Public Service Commission, which called for improvements in its decision to allow rate hikes.
“We have no idea what they’re going to do with this,” Stevenson said.
The group wants other Tega Cay residents to join the effort and email the commission.
“We need all the citizens to support this,” Stevenson said.