The state Public Utilities Commission said it will host public hearings in July as part of an investigation of Young Brothers Lt.’s application to increase inter-island shipping rates by roughly 4 percent.
On Thursday, the PUC suspended a decision on the rate increase and opened an investigation into the water carrier’s application. The increase would generate an additional $3.14 million in revenue for Young Bros.
The PUC said the state Consumer Advocate’s concerns about the lack of detail in the application warranted a suspension and investigation instead of an outright denial. The suspension could last up to six months. The Consumer Advocate said Young Bros. did not provide a summary of the expenses by island or by month for the necessary periods as well as information regarding the distribution of money among the carrier’s affiliated companies.
The PUC said it will issue a separate notice for the public meetings dates and locations regarding the application. In the order, the PUC also said Young Bros. must notify the public of the upcoming meetings.
The public can mail in comments on Young Bros.’ request to increase rates. Written comments can be sent to the Public Utilities Commission 465 South King St. #103 Honolulu, HI 96813 or emailed to Hawaii.PUC@hawaii.gov. The comments must reference Docket No. 2016-0014, include the author’s name and the entity or organization that the author represents.