Utility Infrastructure

$32K Fine for Ex-Utilities Commissioner Lobbying Colleagues

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s campaign watchdog announced Monday that it is fining a former public utilities commissioner $32,500 for failing to disclose that she was lobbying her former colleagues on behalf of ride-hailing and water companies. The Fair Political Practices Commission annou..

Virginia Gov. Announces Compromise on Electric Rate Overhaul

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia’s governor is endorsing a major overhaul of electricity regulations sought by utilities in the state, despite warnings from the state’s attorney general and others that customers will end up paying more than they should. Gov. Ralph Northam issued a statement Monday say..

The Infrastructure Marshall Plan

Robert Carpenter  |  Editor-in-Chief This issue includes our highly anticipated Municipal Sewer and Water Survey. The exclusive survey, conducted last fall by Underground Construction magazine, provides an amazing window into the mindset and funding plans of U.S. sewer/water infrastructure personne..

Vortex Companies

The Vortex Companies, a leading trenchless rehabilitation industry solutions provider, has acquired VacVision Environmental, a trenchless infrastructure and service contractor. Located in South Carolina and Florida, VacVision will significantly bolster Vortex’s  brand and strength in the Southeast. ..

Indiana House Member Among Finalists for Utility Commission

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The legislator who leads the Indiana House utility committee is among the finalists for a seat on the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission that oversees most of the state’s electricity and natural gas companies. The governor’s office says Republican Rep. David Ober of Albion is..

Utility & Communications Construction Outlook

By Daniel Shumate Director, FMI Capital Advisors Inc. The utility transmission and distribution, and communication distribution industries remain in a multiyear investment cycle driven by the need to repair, replace and upgrade the transmission and distribution infrastructure across the United Stat..

Florida DEP Invests $90 Million In Water Quality Improvement Projects

Florida Department of Environmental Protection has provided more than $90 million toward the recent completion of seven water quality improvement projects in Central and South Florida. The funding was awarded through the Division of Water Restoration Assistance’s various funding resources and progra..

California Water District Publishes New Report Outlining Investments in Conservation, Recycling and Groundwater Recovery

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California has published its annual overview of achievements in conservation, recycling and groundwater. Covering fiscal year 2016/17, the report details the backstories behind some milestone achievements, including the district’s cumulative investment of..

Xcel Energy Crews Headed to Puerto Rico

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A crew of utility workers from the Upper Midwest is heading to Puerto Rico to help with the ongoing power restoration efforts following Hurricane Maria. Twenty-five Xcel Energy workers from Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin are travelling to Puerto Rico Monday...

Virginia Governor Voices "Significant Concerns" on Electric Rate Bills

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam said Thursday he has “significant concerns” about utility-backed legislation to allow electric monopolies to continue charging rates that currently produce excessive yearly profits of hundreds of millions of dollars. Northam said he wants state regul..

PPL Crews Head to Puerto Rico on Power Restoration Mission

PPL Electric Utilities employees packed their hard hats and work boots and boarded a flight to Puerto Rico Thursday, the first leg of their month-long journey to help restore power on the hurricane-battered island. The line workers and support personnel from throughout the PPL service territory..

Pennsylvania American Water Kicks Off 2018 Scholarship Program

Pennsylvania American Water today announced that applications are being accepted for its 2018 Stream of Learning Scholarship Program to provide financial assistance to high school seniors who are planning to pursue careers in the water and wastewater industry. The program is designed to support outs..

Emergency Hearing to Address Kentucky Water District Rate Increase

INEZ, Ky. (AP) — The Kentucky Public Service Commission will hold an emergency hearing to discuss proposed rate increases for a troubled Kentucky water district. WYMT-TV reports the Friday morning hearing in Frankfort will discuss the proposed 49.5 percent increase in rates for Martin County Water ..

Power Restored to 240,000 Customers in Puerto Rico

New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the state’s utilities have restored power to nearly 240,000 customers in the San Juan, Puerto Rico metro area, roughly 80 percent of the region’s total customer base. Since November 2017, more than 450 New York utility personnel have been working t..

Virginia Lawmakers Propose Major Electric Rate Regulation Overhaul

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — New utility-backed legislation in Virginia would mean lower monthly bills in the short term but would still allow electric monopolies to charge rates that currently produce excessive yearly profits of hundreds of millions of dollars. A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a..

Philadelphia Sinkhole Prompts Evacuation of Homes

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Authorities say a large sinkhole in Philadelphia has prompted evacuation of some homes, but no injuries have been reported. The Philadelphia fire department says crews dispatched to the neighborhood northeast of the city center Friday reported that the sinkhole measured 30 feet ..

PPL Corporation Names Wood to Board of Directors

PPL Corporation today announced that Phoebe A. Wood, currently the principal of investment firm CompaniesWood and an executive with three decades of international, financial and operational management experience, will join the company’s board of directors, effective immediately. “We are very please..

Connecticut Water to Spend $17 Million Replacing Aging Pipes

Connecticut Water today announced it plans to spend an additional $17.4 million in 2018 to continue enhancing water system reliability by replacing aging pipes. “Connecticut Water is at the forefront of investing in replacing aging water mains,” Craig C. Patla, Connecticut Water’s vice president of..

US Withholds Hurricane Emergency Loan Sought by Puerto Rico

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A billion-dollar emergency loan approved by Congress to help Puerto Rico deal with the effects of Hurricane Maria has been temporarily withheld by federal officials who say the U.S. territory is not facing a cash shortage like it has repeatedly warned about in recent mon..

J.D. Power Study: Natural Gas Utility Satisfaction Reaches All-Time High

According to J.D. Power’s 2017 Gas Utility Business Customer Satisfaction Study, natural gas utility business customer satisfaction scores have reached record levels. With an overall satisfaction score of 792 (on a 1,000-point scale), gas utility business customers are now the most satisfied among a..

Nestegard Elected to ALLETE’s Board of Directors

Susan K. Nestegard, a member of the board of directors for Hormel Foods, has been elected to the ALLETE Inc. board of directors. Besides nine years of service on the Hormel Foods board, Nestegard most recently served as executive vice president and president of Global Healthcare, and chief technica..

Aclara And Suez Join Forces to Provide Smart Infrastructure Solutions to U.S. Cities

Aclara and SUEZ North America today announced an exclusive strategic partnership to deliver advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) and smart infrastructure solutions (SIS) that will enable SUEZ to better serve municipalities across the United States. The Advanced Solutions division of SUEZ North Am..

FERC Approves Avista, Hydro One Merger

Hydro One Limited and Avista Corporation have received approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on the companies’ merger application filed on Sept. 14, 2017. “This marks another important milestone in bringing together Hydro One and Avista,” said Mayo Schmidt, President and CEO..

Utility: Weight of Fill Material Led to Gas Pipeline Fire

ORION TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan utility says the weight of 21 feet of fill material was responsible for a November gas line rupture and massive fire in Oakland County’s Orion Township. Jackson-based Consumers Energy says Monday in a statement that the weight of the material “stressed the pi..

Dominion CEO: Without Deal, South Carolina Power Company Fails

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The top executive of a company looking to buy a troubled South Carolina utility says the state’s leaders can either accept the deal or watch SCANA Corp. fail. News outlets report Dominion Energy CEO Tom Farrell told the Public Service Commission on Thursday that the Virginia c..

Berkshire Hathaway Utility Unit Shuffles Top Executives

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Berkshire Hathaway is shuffling the executives in charge of its utility unit after promoting Greg Abel to oversee all of Berkshire’s non-insurance businesses. Abel’s promotion to vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway was announced Wednesday. Following that move, Berkshire promoted ..

Kentucky Water District Shuts off Service for Many

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky water district says it’s struggling to get water flowing to customers. A Martin County Water District Facebook post says storage tanks were drained because of several reasons, including high water usage. District office manager Joe Hammond tells The Lexington Heral..

More New York Utility Workers Sent to Help Restore Power in Puerto Rico

On Jan. 8, 2018, New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced the deployment of 46 National Grid workers to help restore power to Puerto Rico’s severely damaged power grid from Hurricane Maria in September. “New Yorkers help their neighbors in their time of need and I could not be prouder of the way thi..

Record Cold Results in Record Gas Use for New York Utility

POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. (AP) — The record-cold temperatures late last week resulted in a New York state utility setting a record for natural gas use. Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp. said customers in the eight eastern New York counties it serves used a record amount of natural gas last Friday. Then ..

Hawaii Water Service Files General Rate Case for Waikoloa Service Areas

Hawaii Water Service (Hawaii Water), a subsidiary of California Water Service Group has filed a General Rate Case with the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (HPUC) seeking recovery of capital investments in its Waikoloa Village and Waikoloa Resort systems. If approved as filed, total annual revenue..