LUB Receives Update on Prairie Fire Damage



Power Pole Fire Damage

Lamar Light Plant Superintendent, Houssin Hourieh, told LUB members during their April 26th meeting, the plant was notified by Las Animas authorities on Tuesday, April 12th that some of the 69kv line structures east of Las Animas were burning.  The fire began near the tree dump and sewer lagoon and spread eastward.  Three wooden poles and two, ten-foot fiberglass cross arms mounted on steel poles were destroyed.  Hourieh displayed several photos of the fire’s aftermath noting in several comparisons, more damage occurred in areas where the grasslands were higher, compared to lower shrub growth in areas that had been burned in 2021.

Las Animas and the light plant filed a joint claim with the city’s risk policy holder, CIRSA, and have taken steps for plans with Altitude Energy to replace the crossarms and steel poles in wetland areas.  A special vehicle capable of navigating in swampy terrain has to be shipped in at an estimated cost of $80,000.  The Lamar Light Plant began a power feed to Las Animas later that day for the Ft. Lyon area and the feed will continue until repairs are completed.

The Lamar Utilities Board approved purchase orders totaling $51,945.97 from a total of $75,310.39.  Board members also authorized payment of Bills for April amounting to $763,044.22 of which $663,226.76 was for power purchases for the month from Arkansas River Power Authority (ARPA).

Hourieh presented an irrigation contract for board approval from Malone Farms for a 40-horsepower irrigation pump which is newly installed.  Per the irrigation contract Malone Farms will be charged $10 per horsepower as well as a $23 monthly service charge.

The financial report for the first quarter of 2022 shows that cash is down $699,479 from December and accounts receivable increased by $35,076.

Total operating revenue for March is $960,473 and operating costs are $934,032 for gross operating income of $26,441.  When the non-operating revenues and expenses are factored, there is a net income of $208,009 for the month.

Total operating revenues for the year are $3,101,014 and total operating costs are $2,775,744 resulting in gross operating income of $325,269.  When the non-operating revenues and expenses are factored, there is a net income of $7,936 year-to-date.

When compared to 2021, revenues from retail sales are down approximately $55,147 or 2% comparing March 2022 to 2021 and overall operating expenses are up approximately $101,076 or 4% resulting in a net income of $7,936 for the year.

Hourieh noted there were six scholarship applications for the combined $1,000 scholarship with the Lamar Light Plant and ARPA making equal contributions to the winners.  One entry was from Lamar and five were from McClave.  Members of the board and light plant staff will review the essays which are judged anonymously.
By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarCity of WileyEducationEnvironmentFeaturedPublic SafetySchoolUtilitiesWeatherYouth


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