Tallahassee, Fla. — Senator Wilton Simpson (R- Trilby) applauded the signing of Senate Bill 272, the Consumer Water Protection Act of 2014. The bill, sponsored by Senator Simpson and signed by the governor on June 13, is pro-consumer legislation that empowers consumers to negotiate with private utility companies if they feel the service or the quality of their water is not adequate.
“With the passage of this law, we are protecting the consumer,” stated Senator Simpson. “It will reshape how private water utility companies treat customers in Florida when confronted with water quality and service issues. The people of Florida, including my constituents in Summertree, now have a stronger voice that will result in better quality and service from water utilities,” continued Senator Simpson.
This legislation will yield two essential outcomes. First, it will protect Florida’s consumers by ensuring that when a utility company is not providing the services the customers pay for, the customers have a clearly defined remedy that allows them to petition the Public Service Commission (PSC). The petition process begins if 65% or more of the customers in a service area sign a petition stating that the quality of water or the service is unsatisfactory.
Second, it requires that secondary water quality standards, such as taste, color and smell, be considered by the PSC when a utility requests a rate increase. The PSC will have clear statutory guidelines for denying all or a part of a rate increase if it is determined that the quality of the water is less than satisfactory.
CONTACT: Rachel Perrin Rogers, 850.487.5018