public utility

noun

Definition of public utility 

: a business organization (such as an electric company) performing a public service and subject to special governmental regulation

Examples of public utility in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Utilities and public utility commissions often support expansion of the natural gas network. David Roberts, Vox, "Most American homes are still heated with fossil fuels. It’s time to electrify.," 2 July 2018 But in South Africa, millions of dollars flowing out of a struggling public utility and into the pockets of consultants driving Porsches and Ferraris created an unsavory image that required a response. New York Times, "How McKinsey Lost Its Way in South Africa," 26 June 2018 What is less understood is that even when governments force public utilities to buy renewables, power companies still have to use fossil fuels or uranium to keep the grid up and running when the sun and wind are off duty. George Melloan, WSJ, "Pruitt Leaves a Proud Legacy at the EPA," 11 July 2018 In Illinois, lawmakers considered a bill requiring public utilities operating in the state to report annually on the vulnerability of the state’s water supply system to cyberattacks. Greg Arnette, Fortune, "Commentary: States Are Getting Tough on Data Security—but That Might Be a Problem," 2 May 2018 The public utility company serves approximately 4,700 residential, commercial and institutional customers within the Town of Bel Air limits and in parts of neighboring Forest Hill and Fallston. Allan Vought, The Aegis, "Bel Air water company seeks rate increase to recover new reservoir costs," 28 June 2018 The Sea Dance residential development plan outlines building 53 homes, private streets, public utilities, a water quality basin lot and a 1.15-acre public park on the 8.75-acre Franklin School site at 14422 Hammon Lane. Priscella Vega, latimes.com, "Proposed subdivision on abandoned Franklin School site will go before Huntington Beach commissioners," 6 July 2018 The dam is classified as a low-hazard dam, meaning failure would cause little or no damage to other structures, public utility services, roads or railroads. Nancy Daly, Cincinnati.com, "More precautions taken at Big Bone park due to leaking dam," 28 June 2018 Fire personnel and public utilities workers were at the scene to shut off gas and electricity to the house. Molly Sullivan, sacbee, "Man dies after car crashes into North Sacramento home," 27 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'public utility.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of public utility

1895, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about public utility

Share public utility

Statistics for public utility

Last Updated

25 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for public utility

The first known use of public utility was in 1895

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for public utility

public utility

noun

English Language Learners Definition of public utility

: a company (such as an electric company) that provides a public service and must follow special rules made by the government

public utility

noun

Legal Definition of public utility 

: a business organization (as an electric company) performing a public service and subject to special government regulation

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on public utility

What made you want to look up public utility? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a state of commotion or excitement

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!