Invenergy to reimburse utility for PG&E studies
Luhring noted Director Wayne Langston had suggested several months ago that LMUD and Invenergy have an agreement in place regarding the funding for the studies before they were initiated.
The general manager said Invenergy had been waiting until after the general election in order to know which administration they’d be dealing with.
“We’re back to getting ready to submit information for a system impact study and a right of way investigation by PG&E,” Luhring said. “I know when we talked about that, we talked about how Invenergy needs to pay for that, and I remember Wayne said we needed some sort of agreement so we make sure that happens. They’re in the process of doing the initial funding agreement with us. They would be willing to forward the money, we will deposit that in our account and in return, by this agreement, write a check and attach it to that request for the system impact study and send it to PG&E.”
Luhring said LMUD and Invenergy had not negotiated any interconnection agreements or discussed how to fund the proposed improvements to the LMUD infrastructure.
“It’s not been discussed,” Luhring said. “It will probably start back up the first of the year. There’s value in that right of way we’ve got out there, so we don’t want to forget that. We want to make sure that’s included as we proceed. I just want the board to know there have been no discussions further down that road, however, they have asked we submit this system impact study to PG&E.”
Langston asked the board if it wanted to see the agreement or if management could process the agreement on its own.
Director Fred Nagel asked if the agreement was just “money in, money out,” and Luhring said yes.
“I don’t see any reason for it to come back to the board,” Nagel said.
Luhring said he would have LMUD Jaimee Jones, LMUD’s general counsel review the agreement before he took any action on it.
“If nothing really jumps out at us, we’ll proceed,” Luhring said, “otherwise we’ll bring it back to the board.”
“Just keep us informed,” Nagel said.
“Absolutely,” Luhring said.
The board denied a request from a customer to waive the $250 application fee for new electrical service.
Luhring said the customer expressed a desire to appear before the board. The customer did not attend the meeting.
The general manager said the last billing at the residence was in October 1996. Sometime after that date the property was vandalized, and as a safety precaution LMUD removed the meters and the service wire in June 2003.
A couple of years later the customer purchased the property and began remodeling it and requested service. At that time LMUD told the customer he would have to pay for a new service. The customer didn’t feel it was a new residential service, Luhring said. There was no meter when the customer purchased the property.
“It’s our understanding, intent and interpretation that that was a new project because they were doing a complete remodel of the property and the electric service had been removed before he purchased the property,” Luhring said.
“I don’t see any reason to waive our policy because of this,” Director Matt Lavacot.
The board unanimously denied the customer’s request.
Dave Folce, LMUD’s electric operations manager, gave the board an update on two outages in Janesville.
A November outage was caused when a cross arm caught fire and tripped a circuit breaker.
The cause of the second outage on Dec. 19 was never determined, but Folce said it was a windy day and two wires probably came together due to snow or wind and “slapped the phases together.”
He said each of the outages in Janesville interrupted service to about 760 customers.
“The whole valley is a problem area when we have wind,” Folce said. “We’re working on it.”
Langston had some concerns regarding the Dec. 19 outage in Janesville.
“We went through it, and we were up all night,” Langston said. “I was up until about 4 a.m. and those lights were just on and off, on and off, on and off all night long. It was pretty nerve-wracking. I was up basically up trying to turn off everything that was possibly on to save damage to appliances and computers, that type of thing. If it wasn’t for electricity, I wouldn’t have been able to sleep because of the wind anyway.
“But I did hear through sources that with the location of where this was, close to the highway, CHP was called many times on it, and was involved in it quite a bit. They were a little concerned about the response they got from LMUD. According to them they were told it wasn’t a big deal and we’d take care of it in the morning. In no way am I indicating we need to jeopardize the safety of our employees by getting up there at that time of night to try and fix it, but I think maybe we need to work on our response to CHP when they get involved in this in the middle of the night … When the wind starts blowing hard, we start lighting candles.”
Folce said the district received a large number of phone calls that night and crews would do a better job responding to them in the future. He also said planned upgrades to the system should help resolve the problem in the future.
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