Expect to see a slight increase on your ASPA bill this month
The American Samoa Power Authority has implemented the second increment in its rate increase, and it went into effect on Nov. 21, 2016. It covers only wastewater and solid waste services, according to an ASPA notice, which also notes that there are no changes scheduled for electric and water rates at this time.
Following a study conducted by US based Economists.com in 2014; the increase allows ASPA to collect the actual costs of providing such essential services to the territory from ratepayers. The first incremental rate increases - for wastewater and solid waste went into effect in June of last year.
Under the 2nd incremental increase, for wastewater, the rate has increased by $2.99 from $17.06 to $20.05 for the base charge for the groundwater fee, while the “volume charge” hikes by 34 cents from $1.94 to $2.28 per month. According to ASPA the “volume charge” will be assessed to a water meter serving more than one unit or home.
The hike for solid waste, for example, in residential home collection, will increase by 58 cents from $11.40 to $11.98 per month. For village bins, it’s an increase of 59 cents to $11.98.
For small general service there is an actual decrease - from $57.50 down to $51.75 per month and large general service sees an increase from $391.31 to $399.14 per month.
Complete rate schedules including future ones, are available online at: www.aspower.com
According to the ASPA, the third scheduled rate charges are set for Oct. 1, 2017, which will affect water, wastewater and solid waste, and the fourth change is slated for Oct. 1, 2018 for all three services.
“The implementation of the new rate plans for respective services will fund expansion and maintenance costs for these services in order to continue to provide quality service to our customers,” ASPA said, “The people of our community, who are ratepayers, deserve quality, safe, reliable, cost effective and efficient services.”
According to the semi autonomous agency, ASPA does not make a “profit” or benefit a few private special interests, individuals or multinational companies. It says ASPA ratepayers will be investing their money to continue and to ultimately improve “our services for many years to come.”
At the same time, ASPA said it continues to seek out alternative energy sources to reduce dependency on diesel fuel and grant funding to improve infrastructure, both of which minimize costs to rate payers.
Samoa News points out that ASPA has already achieved renewable energy for Ta’u Island with the launching late last month of solar energy, which is now powering the island instead of depending on fossil fuel. Ofu Island’s renewable energy project is stated to be launching soon.