City Keeps Electric Rate Flat for Users
Bandon Western World, February 4, 2010
The city of Bandon won't be raising electric rates, despite an increase from the Bonneville Power Administration.
According to City Manager Matt Winkel, the fiscal year 2009-10 budget anticipated a BPA wholesale electric rate increase in October 2009. City staff projected that current rates were sufficient to fund the Electric Department through June 30, when the 2009-2010 fiscal year ends. With that information, the city decided not to recommend a retail rate increase for the current fiscal year.
The final amount of the BPA wholesale rate increase was 7.48 percent.
"City staff will continue to closely monitor electric utility revenues and expenses during the rest of the fiscal year to determine if this would necessitate a retail rate increase to pass these costs along to the city's electric customers," Winkel said.
"So far, the Electric Fund and Electric Reserve Fund cash balances have continued to hold steady, so we remain optimistic that a retail rate increase will not be necessary prior to July 1," he added.
The need for utility rate increases will be evaluated as the proposed fiscal year 2010-2011 budget is prepared. The budget is presented to the city Budget Committee in March. Winkel added that a survey was recently conducted by the Oregon Municipal Electric Utilities regarding which of the municipally-owned electric utilities had increased their retail rates in response to the BPA wholesale rate increase. Of the 10 utilities responding, three raised their rates, and seven, including Bandon, did not.
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