Jordan said the water company understands those hardships, which is why West Virginia American Water fought alongside AARP West Virginia for legislation to expand a rate discount program to 68,000 state residents.
The legislation created a 20 percent utility discount for some low-income customers.
The company says it needs the rate hike to recoup the $85 million it has spent since 2009 on rehabilitation of water storage tanks and upgrading water lines, booster stations and water treatment facilities.
The company spent about $24 million on upgrades last year and anticipates it will spend even more in 2013.
Jordan said costs are climbing because the infrastructure is aging: some water pipes in the state are more than 100 years old.
"It's a national phenomenon. It's something every water system in the United States is experiencing," she said.
The PSC will hold two public hearings on June 11 - one in Flatwoods at the Days Hotel and Conference Center and one in Bluefield at the Army National Guard Armory.
It will also hold a meeting in Charleston June 17 at the PSC's hearing room at 201 Brooks St. and one the following day in Huntington's Pullman Plaza Hotel.
All four meetings begin at 6:30 p.m.
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