WSR 14-19-111
[Docket UW-143295—Filed September 17, 2014, 8:33 a.m.]
Subject of Possible Rule Making: The utilities and transportation commission (UTC) commences this rule making to consider rules within chapter 480-110 WAC to improve the financial and managerial capacity of regulated water companies, provide incentives for companies to make appropriate investments and for viable companies or public entities to acquire struggling water systems that have the potential to be stabilized and improved through consolidation and investment.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 80.01.040 and 80.04.160.
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The commission regulates private water companies operating within Washington state that have one hundred or more connections or if the utility charges more than $557 a year per customer. Many of these companies find it difficult to generate sufficient revenue or raise enough capital to make and maintain capital improvements in the systems, comply with safe drinking water standards and be financially and managerially viable. To address the problem of under-investment in water systems, the commission is interested in developing rules to establish financial and managerial standards. The commission is also interested in developing regulatory incentives for companies to make equity investments in their water systems and for viable companies or public entities to acquire struggling water systems that have the potential to be stabilized and improved through consolidation and investment.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: The state departments of health and ecology also have authority over water systems in the state, in particular governing safe drinking water standards and water rights. The commission will coordinate with the agencies in the rule making to ensure that the agencies are working cooperatively with affected water companies.
Process for Developing New Rule: Agency study and the commission will ask for initial written comments, schedule one or more workshops, and will provide the opportunity for stakeholders to submit additional written comments on draft rules and proposed CR-102 rules prior to adoption.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication. Interested persons may file comments with the Executive Director and Secretary, UTC, P.O. Box 47250, 1300 South Evergreen Park Drive S.W., Olympia, WA, 98504-7250, phone (360) 664-1174, facsimile (360) 586-1150, e-mail, or through the UTC web portal by 5:00 p.m., Friday, October 24, 2014.
WRITTEN COMMENTS AND STAKEHOLDER WORKSHOP: Written comments may be submitted to the commission at the address given above and should be filed with the commission no later than 5:00 p.m., Friday, October 24, 2014, for consideration at the November 21, 2014, stakeholder workshop.
Electronic copies. The commission requests that comments be provided in electronic format to enhance public access, for ease of providing comments, to reduce the need for paper copies, and to facilitate quotations from the comments. Comments may be submitted via the commission's web portal at or by electronic mail to the commission's records center at Please include:
The docket number of this proceeding (UW-143295).
The commenting party's name.
The title and date of the comment or comments.
An alternative method for submitting comments may be by mailing/delivering an electronic copy on a flash drive, compact disk, or 3 1/2 inch, IBM-formatted, high-density disk, in .pdf Adobe Acrobat format or in Word 97 or later. Include all of the information requested above. The commission will post on the commission's web site all comments that are provided in electronic format. The web site is located at If you are unable to file your comments electronically or to submit them on a disk, the commission will always accept a paper document.
Opportunity for further comment is anticipated. Information about the schedule and other aspects of the rule making, including comments, will be posted on the commission's web site as it becomes available. If you wish to receive further information on this rule making you may (1) call the commission's records center at (360) 664-1234, (2) e-mail the commission at <>, or (3) mail written comments to the address above to the attention of Steven V. King, executive director and secretary. When contacting the commission, please refer to Docket UW-143295 to ensure that you are placed on the appropriate service list. Questions may be addressed to Chris Rose (360) 664-1303 or e-mail at
TO CONTINUE RECEIVING NOTICES AND INFORMATION ABOUT THIS RULE MAKING - The commission wants to ensure its mailings are sent to persons who are interested in the topic and want to receive that information. ANY PERSON WHO COMMENTS will continue to receive notices and information. If you do not submit comments but wish to remain on the mailing list for this rule making, please advise the records center by any one of the following methods: (1) Send a note with your name, address (or a copy of your mailing label), and telephone and fax numbers referencing Docket UW-143295, and the words "Please keep me on the mailing list"; or (2) e-mail your name, address, telephone and fax numbers, referencing Docket UW-143295, and the words "Please keep me on the mailing list" to <>. Please note that all information in the mailings will be accessible through the commission's internet web site at <>. THOSE INTERESTED PERSONS WHO DO NOT RESPOND MAY NOT RECEIVE FURTHER MAILINGS OR INFORMATION ON THE RULEMAKING.
September 17, 2014
Steven V. King
Executive Director
and Secretary