The following is a report of the Douglas County Public Utility District Commission meeting which was held on August 30, 1999.
A new replacement boat for the Wells Hydroelectric Project is provided for in the new budget. Specifications call for an 8-person rated, 22 to 24 foot aluminum sled-type boat. It is used for erosion inspections as well as reservoir tours plus fisheries and wildlife fieldwork. The Commissioners approved a call for bids for the boat.
A mobile home and carport were acquired in a settlement agreement together with a parcel of land located on the Wells Reservoir. The Commissioners declared the doublewide mobile home and carport surplus to Douglas PUD needs and authorized the advertising and sale of the improvements.
In order to close the Wells Hydroelectric Project Revenue Bonds, Series of 1999, a certificate is required from a consulting engineer. R.W. Beck, Inc. has served Douglas PUD in this capacity in four bond issues since 1986. The firm has a good reputation in this field plus credibility with the bond rating agencies. The Commissioners authorized a contract with R.W. Beck, Inc. to serve as consulting engineers for the Wells Hydroelectric Project.
The Commissioners previewed the preliminary budgets for both the Distribution System and the Wells Project. Purchased power for the Distribution System is estimated at $15,080,000, up approximately $2,200,000 from 1999. This increase is primarily due to a power purchase agreement with the Bonneville Power Administration. Distribution and transmission expenses are down $50,000 with administration and general expenses increasing by $490,000. Total net operating expenses will increase about $2,545,000 to approximately $22,700,000 over 1999 figures. Net operating revenues are expected to increase by approximately $284,000 over last year to $4,223,900. These figures include a 5% per kilowatt-hour rate increase that was previously approved on March 18, 1996.
The Wells Hydroelectric Project operating expense budget for September 1999 to August 2000 is down approximately $283,000 from last year. Some of the major changes include an additional $100,000 for fish studies, $150,000 for structures maintenance, and $1.2 million as estimated debt service for the 1999 bonds. Major reductions amounted to $500,000 for reservoirs, dams, and waterways maintenance, $400,000 for electric plant maintenance, $250,000 for station equipment, and $350,000 for regulatory and commission expenses. The total budget amounts to $32,322,500; a .9% decrease from last year’s figures. The date of October 4, 1999 was established as the final hearing date for both budgets. That meeting will be held at 2:00 p.m. in the East Wenatchee Headquarters Commission Board Room.
The Commissioners rescheduled the September 6th commission meeting to September 7th at 2:00 p.m. in the East Wenatchee Headquarters due to the forthcoming Labor Day Holiday.