LMUD hikes its facilities charge $2
The facilities charge increase applies only to customers who currently pay an $8 per month facilities charge. Six of the district’s rate schedules contain facilities charges that are much higher. The facilities charge for those customers remain unchanged.
The rate schedule for the Susanville Indian Rancheria, which receives an allocation from the Western Area Power Administration, also remains unchanged.
A monthly facilities charge has been part of LMUD billings since the district’s inception. For many years the charge remained at $3.50 per month. In October 2005, the district raised the charge to $8 per month.
Ray Luhring, LMUD’s general manager, presented a report to the board on the proposed increase at its June 19 meeting.
According to Luhring’s report, the facilities charge consists of the costs associated with the reading of meters, the generation and processing of billings and the physical facilities associated with the meters.
LMUD Director Fred Nagel noted no one from the public attended the public hearing to speak on either side of the issue. He said the last time the board considered increasing the facilities charge, a number of customers addressed the board at the public hearing on both sides of the issue.
According to a handout prepared by Bill Stewart, the district’s controller, and distributed at the meeting, the district’s total cost of the facilities charge — without considering the publicly owned utility district’s debt — is $61,688. That’s $5.68 for each of the district’s 10,863 service connections.
When the district’s debt is added into the facilities charge, the charge rises to $27.85 with the actual remaining life of debt repayment for facilities and $16.76 when adding the debt and considering a reasonable usable life of facilities.
Stewart said at $10 the approved facilities charge is lower than both of those amounts.
The board unanimously approved the increase in the facilities charge, but director Wayne Langston was absent.
The board also approved updated job descriptions for all the union positions within the district. Staff currently is working on providing job descriptions for the nonunion positions as well.
The board’s next regularly scheduled meeting will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 26.
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