Blumenthal questions layoffs at water company

Keith Loria Aug. 26, 2010, 9:28pm


HARTFORD, Conn. (Legal Newsline) - Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has called for an investigation into potential plans by the Connecticut Water Company to reduce its workforce weeks after a rate increase was approved to fund higher staffing levels.

An anonymous employee informed Blumenthal's office of the layoffs, which were later confirmed with the company.

"Shuffling employees out the door after a rate increase - which we opposed - would belie the company's promises used to justify its rate increases," Blumenthal said.

"I urge the DPUC to investigate whether these Connecticut Water Company layoffs break the company's promise to increase staff, not diminish it.

The Department of Public Utility Control approved the Connecticut Water Company's application to increase rates on July 14. The application also allowed for the increase of ratepayer-funded employees from 226 to 233.

"These employees are on the front lines of providing service," the Connecticut Water Company said while seeking the rate increase.

"The company needs these employees to serve its highly decentralized customer base. The company has acquired several small systems that require more attention and support than the company's larger systems. The company requires adequate resources to provide quality service to all of its customers in all of its systems, regardless of size."

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