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Lamar Utility Board Meeting Notes ARPA Lawsuit Probably Back on the Table

 

 

The Lamar Utility Board members held a brief meeting, Tuesday, July 11, 2017 to approve purchase orders totaling $731,781 and monthly bills of $188,145.13. Members also approved the purchase of stock inventory of crossarms and line hardware for power pole equipment.  The lowest of seven bids, $10,440, was approved by unanimous vote.

Lamar Light and Power Superintendent, Houssin Hourieh, noted that sales of electricity through May have increased 1.51% and revenue has increased by 10.23%. The customer base has remained unchanged at 5,614 connected meters from this same time last year.  The highest noted customer base occurred in 2003 at 5,836 before decreasing, attributable to the layoffs that followed that year from Neoplan USA.  Three failed voltage regulators are under repair.  The units help reduce distribution losses by maintaining proper voltage.

The issue of Case 31, the lawsuit between the City of Lamar and Arkansas River Power Authority was briefly discussed. Approval of a settlement agreement involving the unanimous vote of all six municipal ARPA members ended with the ‘no’ vote on the part of the La Junta City Council and the Trinidad municipal representatives taking the issue off their agenda.  The deadline for accepting the settlement is July 14, 2017.  According to Mayor Roger Stagner, city liaison to the utility board, the case will revert to a trial with a judge deciding on a date for the next hearing sometime in October or November.  He expects the case, approximately four weeks long, won’t be presented to a jury until early in 2018.

By Russ Baldwin

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