2020 Year in Review – SEPTEMBER



Holly Postpones Landfill Closing to November

The Holly town landfill may have more lives than a cat! The Trustees were to consider closing the landfill by Saturday, September 5th during their monthly meeting and move forward with an alternative plan for refuse collection and disposal. The concerns over opening or closing have always revolved around customer costs and trying to follow guidelines established by the Colorado Department of Health & Environment for either maintaining or closing the landfill site. After a lengthy discussion with the public, the Trustees decided to move forward on a motion from new Trustee Zach Davis and voted to keep the landfill open until November 30th. By that time, some new efforts will be made to get a response from the CDPHE on the town’s options.

Whatever the town decides, there will be costs, whether it’s bringing in roll offs to store refuse until it’s hauled away to a different location, establishing a transfer station while allowing tree and branch disposal at the landfill, curbside pick-up of routine trash and special orders to haul away appliances or furniture or closing the current landfill and opening a brand new one.


Lamar Utility Board Holds Public Hearing on Proposed Rate Hike

Andrew Ross, Rate Consultant of Nebraska Municipal Power Pool, provided an updated cost of service and rate design presentation for the Lamar Utility Board prior to its move into a public hearing for proposed changes to the current electric rate schedule on Tuesday, September 29, 2020.   He, along with Lamar Light Plant Superintendent, Houssin Hourieh provided information during the public hearing on the rate modification proposals. The last rate increase was in 2012.

As outlined, the recommendations from NMPP include:

Increased rates generally by 1.4% per year for five years. This includes a rate shift among customer classes that varies between 1.2% to 2.4%, which is based on the cost of service for each class. The study proposes that revenues will continue to decline by about $345,736 or 3.5% in 2021, $246,943 or 2.6% in 2022, $164,786 or 1,8% in 2023 and in 2024-2025 revenue will start to see a positive increase of about 2.6% or $233,652. There is a 12% Charter Appropriation fee that includes a transfer from the city’s general fund of $350,000 per year for the next 24 years to help reduce the fee to customers per the ARPA’s settlement agreement with the City of Lamar.


Lamar City Council Opposes LUB Proposed Rate Hike

The Lamar City Council unanimously voted to adopt Resolution No. 20-09-01 which opposes a basic rate adjustment for Light Plant customers during their September 14th meeting. Prior to the Lamar Utilities Board public hearing on Tuesday, September 29th, regarding a proposed 1.4% electric rate increase for several classes of customers, including residential, the Lamar City Council is asking for a postponement for one year for any rate increases. Mayor Kirk Crespin stated that given the economic impact the community is enduring due to the pandemic; it would not be in the best interests of the Light Plant customers to see an increase go into effect next year. If approved, the rate increase would start on January 1, 2021, adding on average, $1.65 to a residential customer’s monthly bill, or about $18.80 per year for an average residential customer.

The resolution cited several reasons to the council’s opposition including surpluses in the city’s currently utility funds. The resolution stated that electricity has run a year to date surplus of 18.71%; sewer has run a year to date surplus of 9.76%; trash collections has run a year to date surplus of 19.30% and water has run a similar surplus of 15.33%. It also states the current high cost of electricity from ARPA compared to other utility suppliers such as Xcel Energy and the county’s poverty level of 21.6% compared to the rest of the state at 9.6%. The resolution added that these rates would discourage businesses from any future investment in the community as well as potential residents.

Covid Flu Stop @ Fairgrounds

Prowers County Public Health Scheduling Drive-Through Flu Shot Clinics

Prowers County Public Health & Environment announces their annual flu shot clinics for 2020. Due to the current situation of COVID 19 and to protect our staff and residents, only drive through flu clinics will be offered. Vaccine will be available for both children and adults including High Dose vaccine, for those >65 years of age. These drive through clinics are open to all residents of Southeast Colorado. For the safety of public health staff and those receiving a flu vaccination during these drive through clinics, it is highly recommended that all persons over the age of 2 years wear a face mask while in the vehicle and receiving a flu vaccination.

Filed Under: Featured

About the Author: