Lamar Utility Board Considers 2023 Budget



The Lamar Utility Board approved payment of purchase orders totaling $36,840.94 from a total of $46,471.11 during their September 27th meeting.  Bills amounting to $1,156,886.13 were authorized for payment including $1,039,424.28 for electricity from Arkansas River Power Authority.  One new piece of equipment, a drone, was purchased by the plant.  Superintendent, Houssin Hourieh, explained, “This will save the plant some time and money as it will be used to inspect the blades of the four wind turbines, looking for cracks on the edges and other sections of each unit.”  Over the years, drones have been purchased by insurance companies for inspecting roofs and other high elevation buildings, radio and tv broadcast towers for high altitude inspections as well as real estate companies to showcase a property.

Total operating revenues for the year are $9,549,503 and total operating costs are $8,965,529 resulting in gross operating income of $583,974.  When the non-operating revenues and expenses are taken into consideration, there is a net loss of $475,400 year to date.

When compared to 2021, revenues from retail sales are down approximately $128,013 or 1% comparing August 2022 to 2021 and overall operating expenses are up appro0ximately $440,707 or 5% resulting in a net loss of $475,400 for the year.

A ‘thank-you’ letter of appreciation from J.W. Thompson was noted, highlighting assistance given to her earlier in September when a leaking water issue developed in her house.  After calling the Lamar Light and Power night number, employees Skinner and Van Galder helped her connect to the responsible party for assistance.

The utility board reviewed a draft of the 2023 budget, noting that in early 2023, the bonds used to finance the construction of the wind turbines will have been paid off.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: Chamber of CommerceCity of LamarConsumer IssuesFeaturedUtilities


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