The Laurens Commission of Public Works received a review of the proposed budget for 2013 at yesterday’s meeting for November. General manager Dale Satterfield said he’s proposing a rate increase only on the base rate charge for natural gas. He suggests increasing the base rate by 2.9 cents per ccf, which should cost an average customer just over $1.30 a month.
The budget included an anticipated price tag of $9,100,000 to purchase electricity from PMPA. Satterfield said that represents a 5.95% increase in the wholesale price of electricity beginning May 1st. He also anticipates $3.7 million to purchase natural gas next year. Another expense increase he anticipates in a 16.75% hike in the cost of raw water, due to the Laurens County Water and Sewer Commission adding a new system in Lake Rabon that keeps the water stored in the lake from picking up the unpleasant taste that plagued the water supply in recent years.
The overall budget for Laurens CPW in 2013 totals nearly $46,000,000; which is much larger than usual due to projects funded by grants next year. These include the on-going change-out of most water meter in the city’s utility system and a Westwide Water project at $2.9 million to increase water pressure on the north and west sides of town and allow for service to new industry in Hunter Industrial Park. There’s also a $3 million a gas line replacement project to put in aluminum pipes, replacing old steel pipes in the natural gas distribution system.
Dale Satterfield suggested a vote on the new budget at the regular CPW meeting for December.
Commissioner Parker Moore took the Oath of Office for a new term during yesterday’s meeting of the Laurens CPW.