The following is a report of the Douglas County Public Utility District Commission meeting that was held on August 28, 2000.
The Commissioners presented Assistant Purchasing Agent Marliss Jones with her 30-year service award. In making the presentation, Commission President Mike Doneen thanked Jones for her many years of dedicated service to the customers of Douglas County. “It’s been my pleasure and good fortune to have worked for Douglas County PUD for the past 30 years”, Jones replied.
The bid of $1,100 from Jackie L. Feenstra for the purchase of Lot 1, Block 10, Town of Withrow, Washington was accepted by the Commission. The lot had been declared surplus to Douglas PUD and offered for sale through the bid process. Bids to purchase the lot were opened at the regular Commission meeting of August 21st.
Fishery Biologist Shane Bickford reviewed the 2000 Steelhead Survival Study results for the Commission. This was the third such study of survival covering the area from the Methow River to 1000 feet below the Wells Hydroelectric Project. There were approximately 46,000 steelhead were used in the study. The study results showed that 94.6% +/- 2.9% of the steelhead survived their passage through the reservoir and the dam. The results of this study track well with the two previous studies and are well above the requirements of the PUD’s Habitat Conservation Plan and Long Term Fish Settlement Agreement.
The Commissioners previewed the preliminary budgets for both the Distribution System and the Wells Project. Purchased power for the Distribution System Operating Budget for 2001 is estimated at $21,242,000, up approximately $6,160,000 from the 2000 estimate. This increase is primarily due to a power purchase agreement with the Bonneville Power Administration. Administration and general expenses are down approximately $200,000 from last year’s estimate and taxes are estimated to decline by approximately $170,000. The Distribution System Capital Budget of $9,204,500 for 2001 includes approximately $1.8 million for fiber optic installations and equipment. A total revenue of $32,830,000 estimate is an increase of $5,899,000 over the 2000 budget and includes a 5% rate increase that was previously approved on March 18, 1996 and has been deferred thereafter.
The Wells Hydroelectric Project Operating Budget for September 2000 to August 2001 is up approximately $400,000 from last year’s estimate. Some major changes from the fiscal year 2000 budget include an additional $300,000 for the development of base maps for property and wildlife management, $150,000 for fish study cost increases, and $185,000 for fish spawning surveys. Hydraulic Power Generation Maintenance is down $167,000. Transmission Maintenance is down $140,000. At $32,722,600, the total Wells Hydroelectric Project Operating Budget amounts to a 1.2% increase from last year’s estimate. The Wells Project revenue estimate is equal to the operating budget as required by contract. The Wells Project Capital Budget totals $1,076,400 and includes $250,000 for replacement of two 230kv circuit breakers. October 2, 2000 was established as the final hearing date for both budgets. The hearing will be held at 2:00 p.m. in the East Wenatchee Headquarters Commission Board Room.
The Commissioners reminded those in attendance that the regular September 4th Commission meeting had been rescheduled for Tuesday, September 5th at 2:00 p.m. in the East Wenatchee Headquarters due to the Labor Day Holiday.