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Growth of large private water companies brings higher water rates, little recourse for consumers

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When Robert White opened his water bill last month, his jaw dropped: $250 for a month's worth of water and sewer service. The 63-year-old construction contractor, who shares a three-bedroom home with his wife in the bucolic Springbrook Centre subdivision, said he likes to keep his lawn green and expects hefty water bills. "I just don't want to be hijacked," he said.

White's water service is provided by a private utility owned by California-based SouthWest Water Co. LLC. Just across the four-lane Pflugerville Parkway, where White's neighbors in the Springbrook Glen subdivision -- a nearly identical grid of neatly arranged brick-faced homes -- get their water from Pflugerville, rates are on average about 60 percent less.

White's bill for water service may nearly double soon, if SouthWest Water gets the latest rate increase it has requested. "I have never felt so helpless," he said.

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This is the fly in our socioeconomic system! &nb... by Paul Repstock on Sunday, Dec 25, 2011 at 2:12:59 AM
The 'Lord' giveth, the 'Lord' taketh....mostly the... by Ned Lud on Sunday, Dec 25, 2011 at 6:06:05 AM
Chabot, from Cincinnati has just proposed the air ... by Dennis Kaiser on Sunday, Dec 25, 2011 at 8:24:45 AM
Water was once a part of the commons of a civilize... by John Sanchez Jr. on Sunday, Dec 25, 2011 at 8:59:35 AM
How can 'property' own property? That is ridicu... by Ned Lud on Sunday, Dec 25, 2011 at 10:12:55 AM
There s much more to say on this topic, but I choo... by Paul Repstock on Sunday, Dec 25, 2011 at 11:03:50 AM