CLARK PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION ELECTS OFFICERS, APPROVES NEW DISTRICTS AND WATER CONNECTION CHARGES
– Board adopts commission redistricting and increases cost for water system hook-up –
VANCOUVER, WA – January 18, 2012 – Clark Public Utilities’ commissioners on Tuesday, Jan. 17, kept with the ongoing rotation of offices and elected Carol Curtis to replace Byron Hanke as the board president. Nancy Barnes will take over vice presidential duties and Hanke will assume secretarial responsibilities for 2012.
As required every ten years, commissioners then reviewed revised election districts and approved a change primarily to account for shifting populations in Clark County. The board has historically timed the reviews to the release of new ten-year census data as it did this year. A map of the revised districts is available on the Clark Public Utilities website or in person at the downtown location, 1200 Fort Vancouver Way.
Commissioners also revisited current charges for new customers and developers to connect to the Clark Public Utilities water system. One of the lowest in the region, a cost of service analysis indicated that at $2,300 the current connection rate for a basic residential-sized meter is below the actual cost to the utility of $3,320. Still below the average for neighboring water systems, the new rate of $2,900, effective Feb. 1, closes the gap by 60 percent but continues to provide an incentive for development in our service territory.
"In anticipation of recovery in the building sector we want to be sensitive to the development community while also taking care to recover actual costs of new connections so our existing customers aren’t significantly subsidizing new construction," said Carol Curtis, commission president. "The approved solution is a compromise that benefits current customers while minimizing the impact on those we expect in the future."
Commercial and industrial hook-ups will increase at a comparable rate to residential. Prior to the decision, the utility contacted potential customers and developers likely to be affected and the change is not unexpected. Despite the increase, Clark Public Utilities remains one of the least costly water systems in the area for new customers to access.
About Clark Public Utilities
Clark Public Utilities is a customer-owned public utility that provides electric service to more than 183,000 customers throughout Clark County. The utility also provides water service to about 30,000 homes and businesses in the Hazel Dell, Salmon Creek, Lakeshore, Hockinson, Brush Prairie, La Center, Meadow Glade, Amboy and Yacolt areas.
Clark Public Utilities is proud to be named a J.D. Power 2011 Customer Service Champion and is only one of 40 companies so named in the U.S. Additionally, Clark Public Utilities was ranked highest in customer satisfaction among midsize utilities in the west by J.D. Power and Associates in 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011.