DR 98-128
                        CENTRAL WATER COMPANY, INC.
                       Prehearing Conference Order  
                         O R D E R   N O.  23,082
                             December 8, 1998
         On September 25, 1998, Central Water Company Inc.
     (Central or the Petitioner), filed with the New Hampshire Public
     Utilities Commission (Commission) proposed rate schedules which,
     if approved, would result in an increase of approximately 32.15% 
     for the 625 customers at the Locke Lake Development in Barnstead,
     New Hampshire.  The Commission initiated this proceeding by Order
     of Notice on October 27, 1998 and held a prehearing conference on
     November 13, 1998.  
         On the day of the prehearing conference, Central filed
     a petition for temporary rates with supporting testimony.  In its
     petition, Central seeks a temporary rate increase of $51,493 or
     19.55% for service rendered on or after December 7, 1998. 
     According to Central, "the Company is earning substantially less
     than its authorized rate of return, [and therefore] is compelled
     to seek temporary rate relief to ensure that it will have the
     ability to satisfy its obligations during the winter months." 
     Petition at 6.
         Locke Lake Colony Association filed a timely
     intervention request on November 4, 1998.
         In light of the Company's petition for temporary rates,
     we direct Central to notify all customers of its request for
     temporary rates by serving a copy of its petition and a copy of
     this Order (in accordance with N.H. Admin. Rules Puc 1601.05(j))
     on current and known prospective customers and the Barnstead Town
     Clerk by first class U.S. Mail, postmarked no later than December
     14, 1998.  We also direct Central to publish a copy of this Order
     no later than December 14, 1998 in a newspaper of general
     circulation in that portion of the state in which its operations
     are conducted. Publication must be documented by affidavit filed
     with the Commission on or before December 15, 1998.  
         The revised procedural schedule in this matter shall be
     as follows:
         Notice to Customers                December 14, 1998
         Submission of Request for
           Intervention                     December 21, 1998
         Temporary Rate Testimony           December 30, 1998
         Data Requests on Temporary
           Rate Testimony                   January 8, 1999
         Response to Data Requests          January 15, 1999
         Hearing on Temporary Rates         January 21, 1999
         Data Request on Permanent
           Rate Filing                      February 4, 1999
         Data Responses on Permanent
           Rate Filing                      February 18, 1999
         Second Set of Data Requests        March 4, 1999
         Responses to Second Set of
           Data Requests                    March 18, 1999
         Staff and Intervenor
           Testimony                        April 1, 1999
         Data Requests  
           on Staff & Intervenor Testimony  April 15, 1999
         Responses to Company
           Data Requests                    April 29, 1999
         Settlement Conference              May 13, 1999
         Settlement Agreement to
           Commission                       May 26, 1999
         Hearing on the Merits              June 3, 1999
         Based upon the foregoing, it is hereby
         ORDERED, that the procedural schedule in this matter is
     set forth in the body of this order; and it is
         FURTHER ORDERED, that Central is directed to notify its
     customers as set forth herein.
         By order of the Public Utilities Commission of New
     Hampshire this eighth day of December, 1998.
       Douglas L. Patch     Susan S. Geiger       Nancy Brockway
           Chairman           Commissioner        Commissioner
     Attested by:
     Thomas B. Getz
     Executive Director and Secretary