Kearneysville, W.Va. — West Virginia American Water, announced Monday that it has completed the acquisition of Jefferson Utilities, including the assets of Jefferson Utilities, Inc., Valley Water and Sewer Services, Shenandoah Junction Public Sewer and East Jefferson Sewer Services for $27 million. The combined systems serve 3,978 customer connections in Jefferson, Berkeley and Morgan counties.
A press release from the company says, “West Virginia American Water is thrilled to become the water and wastewater service provider for many residents throughout the Eastern Panhandle,” said West Virginia American Water President Robert Burton. “The panhandle of West Virginia is vibrant and growing. Expanding our services into the region stands to benefit all of our service areas as we serve more communities in West Virginia. We thank Lee Snyder for the excellent work he has done to build the Jefferson Utilities systems, and we look forward to continuing the exceptional level of service that customers in this area have come to expect and deserve.”
The press release recounts a year-long review of the deal by the Public Service Commission (PSC) of West Virginia. The purchase agreement between West Virginia American Water and Jefferson Utilities was executed under §24-2-4g, which allows sellers to value their water and wastewater systems at a price based on the fair value of the assets. Enacted in 2020, the statute gives utility owners the opportunity to receive a purchase price that is more reflective of the current value of their system assets, according to the company.
“All of our employees and I have worked diligently and tirelessly over the past 25 years to establish the Jefferson Utilities’ water system. We have accomplished a great deal and served our customers well. As I approach retirement, my succession goal is to see our work continued by a very capable utility company, West Virginia American Water,” said former Jefferson Utilities owner Lee Snyder. “With this agreement, the future of the Eastern Panhandle is bright. This sale presents an incredible opportunity for our area and our customers. I look forward to all that West Virginia American Water will do for and within our communities.”
Beginning Monday, Jefferson Utilities customers will become customers of West Virginia American Water and will be billed at the rates established by the PSC. Certain low-income customers may qualify for the company’s customer assistance programs, including an automatic 20 percent discount through the company’s Special Residential Reduced Rate program.
Customers will receive additional information from West Virginia American Water in the form of a new customer packet, detailing online bill pay options, customer service information and more.
Next steps in the transition will include updating and improving infrastructure throughout the system to continue providing reliable water and wastewater service to residents across the Eastern Panhandle.
*FROM PRESS RELEASE*
About West Virginia American Water
West Virginia American Water, a subsidiary of American Water, is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water services to approximately 587,000 people.