CLINTON, CONNECTICUT, Nov. 10, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Connecticut Water Service, Inc. (NASDAQ-GS: CTWS) announced today that the Company's Board of Directors approved an overall $55.4 million Capital Spending Plan for 2017 with $46.7 million for The Connecticut Water Company (Connecticut Water) and $8.7 million for The Maine Water Company (Maine Water). Those regulated water utility subsidiaries serve about 92,000 customers, or about 315,000 people in Connecticut and about 32,000 customers, or about 85,000 people in Maine, respectively. Approximately 40% of the capital spending planned for 2017, or $22.2 million, is allocated for pipeline replacement and other projects eligible through Connecticut's Water Infrastructure and Conservation Adjustment (WICA) and Maine's Water Infrastructure Charge (WISC) programs. Eric W. Thornburg, CTWS's President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "In 2016, Connecticut Water hit a milestone with replacement of its 100 th mile of pipe, or more than 6% of the Company's water mains, through the WICA program since it became available to us in 2007. Those mains had an average age of 75 years. Replacing that old pipe improves service reliability and water quality for customers and costs up to six times less than repairing a water main when it fails. WISC became available to us in Maine in 2013." Mr. Thornburg added, "Infrastructure investments are key to our long-term business plan, providing an added financial benefit for our customers and shareholders as a significant portion of this investment will reduce operating expenses, in the form of lower tax expense. The needed continuing investment in infrastructure replacement fundamentally reduces the cost of providing high quality water service to our customers. Further, this investment benefits the environment by reducing the amount of water lost to underground leaks, the power wasted to pump lost water, and enhancing public fire protection on our water systems.