Lamar Utility Board Approves 2022 Budget

Lamar Light and Power Turbines



The Lamar Utility Board approved the 2022 Budget with a unanimous vote during the October 12th meeting.  The budget includes total revenues in excess of $17.8M, $16.4M from retail electric sales and the remaining primarily from wind turbine production.  The budget is proposing expenses of $15.3M which includes $11M for power supply.  Additional expenditures include:  $1,335,715 for personnel costs, $1,855,386 for repairs and maintenance and the annual Charter Appropriation paid to the City of Lamar for $1,750,395 which is the full 12% from retail sales as allowed by the Charter. That sum is reduced by $350,000 as a credit transfer from the Lamar/ARPA settlement from the LRP as approved by the Lamar City Council.

The Lamar Utility Board approved $1,108,988.52 in purchase orders from a total of $1,128,206.67 during their October 12th meeting.  The Arkansas River Power Authority electricity purchase for September was $1,038,586.44. Bills for the month amounted to $276,402.90.

The board approved the bid from Western United for various LED light fixtures, ground rods and ground wire for $6,067.20.  These are stock inventory replacement purchases.  The board also approved the annual write-offs for uncollectible accounts for 2020 totaling $35,330.76 which represents one-quarter percent of the 2020 electric sales revenue of $14,132,122.  The budget for write-offs is $70,000.  The delinquent accounts are turned over to a collection agency for action.  The largest accounts range from $1,020 to $1,400 on average and there are less than ten of those in the delinquent account file.  Combining the electric accounts with $11,717,22 from the water department and $5,667.59 from sanitation, the total is $52,715.57 for 2021.  Board accountant, Lisa Denman, noted there was only one business listed on the delinquent accounts, which she stated was a positive indication.  Linda Williams, City of Lamar Clerk added that accounts are shut off at 60 days, following a notice of action after a lack of payment for two months.  A re-connection under the customer’s name will not be done until the payments are made good.

Light Plant Superintendent, Houssin Hourieh, told the board the line crew is upgrading a three-phase, 4.16kv circuit between Main and 5th Street from Hickory to Washington Street.  This includes pole replacement, replacing crossarms with 10 foot arms and insulator replacement.  This will help improve system reliability and efficiency, he explained.  The crew also replaced a 40 foot steel pole that was hit and run on Sunday, October 3rd on CR NN between Rd 8 and Rd 9 in Prowers County.  The crew is currently providing upgrades by re-locating distribution transformer voltage regulators and poles from the former coal domes to the old boiler area of the LRP.

The board set October 26th for a strategic planning session for future considerations of plant operations following the regularly scheduled meeting.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarConsumer IssuesEconomyFeaturedUtilities


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