New Jersey American Water says it is proposing an average 15 percent rate hike to cover its $30 million investment in infrastructure this year.  The rate increase would have to be approved by the state Board of Public Utilities before it's put into effect. 
Under the proposal, a ratepayer who pays about $596 a year for water would see a $92 increase.  That's less than a penny per gallon of water, according to the water company. 
But Freeholder Director Bruce Garganio questions whether the water company is spending its money wisely.  He says the company is reporting large profits and says the shareholders should pay for some of the costs. 
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