Rochester Public Utilities | Blog

Archive for the ‘Budget’ Category

RPU board approves 2014 budget with rate increases in electric and water utility

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

The Rochester Public Utilities (RPU) Board approved the 2014 budget including a rate increase of 3% in the electric utility and 1.5% in the water utility. The last electric rate increase was in 2009 and the last water rate increase was in 2007. The 2014 budget will require final approval from the City Council. If final approval is given, the budgets and rate increases will take effect on January 1, 2014.  

 

“The RPU Board considered numerous budget scenarios, but settled on the one that they felt would best serve all of the RPU customers in 2014,” said general manager Larry Koshire.


With the rate increases applied, an average residential bill will increase $2.34 per month for electric service and $0.17 per month for water service. RPU can assist customers to help lower their electric and water usage through RPU’s Conserve & Save® rebate program for purchases of qualifying efficient equipment.

 

Final budget approval will be requested from the Rochester City Council on November 18 at 7 p.m.

 

For more information on RPU or the 2014 budget, please contact Tony Benson at 507-280-1534 or email at tbenson@rpu.org.

 

 

About Rochester Public Utilities

 

As the municipal utility of Rochester, Minn., for more than 110 years, RPU provides high-quality and reliable electricity to over 50,000 customers.  Water customers number more than 37,000.  RPU continually investigates innovative technologies to help customers realize the best value from the services they receive.  Current initiatives include fuel cell research, wind power, and photovoltaic offerings.

 

 

 

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2013 budget approved by RPU board with no rate increase proposed for electric utility or water utility

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

The Rochester Public Utilities (RPU) board approved the 2013 budget, with no rate increase for either the water or electric utility, as presented by staff at the October 30 meeting. This marks the fourth straight year without a rate increase for the electric utility and sixth straight year without a general rate increase for the water utility.

 

RPU is committed to being fiscally sound during the continued tough economic times. However, keeping budget levels flat over the last three years has proven to be challenging due to increased operating costs.

 

In order to sustain the reductions from the 2011 and 2012 budgets, RPU staff has worked diligently to ensure that reductions were made in places that will not compromise core components of RPU’s business. Some of the significant business drivers for the electric utility in 2013 include:

 

·         Commitment to community to maintain rates during continuing slow economic times while supporting our mission statement and strategic initiatives;

·         Continue at approved staffing levels, holding some positions open for evaluation;

·         SMMPA’s Board approved rates with no increase for 2013, SMMPA, continues to be a significant operating expense at approximately $88 million or about 68% of our operating costs;

·         Lack of demand and low prices in the MISO market have allowed RPU to project purchases at a low cost. However, sales into the market are projected to be low;

·         Achieving our energy conservation goals through continued work with residential and commercial customers; and

·         Continuing our participation in CAPX 2020 initiative to expand the electric transmission grid to ensure reliable and affordable service.

 

Significant business drivers for the water utility include:

 

·         Continued water conservation programs and education;

·         New reservoir to be constructed in 2013 and 2014

 

Final budget approval will come from the Rochester City Council on November 19 at 7 p.m.

 

For more information on RPU or the 2013 budget, please contact Tony Benson at 507-280-1534 or email at tbenson@rpu.org.

 

 

About Rochester Public Utilities

 

As the municipal utility of Rochester, Minn., for more than 110 years, RPU provides high-quality and reliable electricity to over 47,000 customers.  Water customers number more than 36,000.  RPU continually investigates innovative technologies to help customers realize the best value from the services they receive.  Current initiatives include fuel cell research, wind power, and photovoltaic offerings.

 

 

 

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No rate increase proposed for electric utility for the fourth straight year and sixth straight year for the water utility

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

Rochester Public Utilities (RPU) staff will present the 2013 budget proposal at Tuesday’s Board meeting with a recommendation of no rate increase for the electric or water utility. This marks the fourth straight year without a rate increase for the electric utility and sixth straight year without a general rate increase for the water utility. The RPU Board will hear the budget proposal at the October board meeting and will take action on the budget at a special board meeting on November 13.

 

“While the economy is beginning to recover in our area the return has been slow and RPU remains committed to keeping rates to our customers stable. Holding the budgets at 2012 levels is only possible because of the dedication of our employees. We will maintain our current budget levels without compromising our core values of safety and reliability in our service,” said RPU general manager Larry Koshire.

 

RPU is committed to being fiscally sound during the continued slow economic times. However, keeping budget levels flat over the last few years has proven to be challenging due to increased operating costs. It is uncertain how long RPU can continue maintain its services without a rate increase.

 

In order to sustain the reductions from the 2011 and 2012 budgets, RPU staff has worked diligently to ensure that reductions were made in places that will not compromise core components of RPU’s business. Some of the significant business drivers for the electric utility in 2013 include:

 

·         Commitment to community to maintain rates during continuing slow economic times while supporting our mission statement and strategic initiatives;

·         Continue at approved staffing levels, holding some positions open for evaluation;

·         SMMPA’s Board approved rates with no increase for the third year , SMMPA, continues to be a significant operating expense at approximately $88 million or about 68% of our operating costs;

·         Lack of demand and low prices in the MISO market have allowed RPU to project purchases at a low cost. However, sales into the market are projected to be low;

·         Achieving our energy conservation goals through continued work with residential and commercial customers; and

·         Continuing our participation in CAPX 2020 initiative to expand the electric transmission grid to ensure reliable and affordable service.

Significant business drivers for the water utility include:

 

·         Continued water conservation programs and education;

·         New reservoir to be constructed in 2013 and 2014; and

 

 

The RPU Board will act on the proposed electric and water budgets at a special November Board Meeting on Tuesday, November 13 at 4 p.m. at the RPU Service Center. Final budget approval will come from the Rochester City Council on November 19 at 7 p.m.

 

For more information on RPU or the proposed 2013 budget, please contact Tony Benson at 507-280-1534 or email at tbenson@rpu.org.

 

 

About Rochester Public Utilities

 

As the municipal utility of Rochester, Minn., for more than 110 years, RPU provides high-quality and reliable electricity to over 47,000 customers.  Water customers number more than 36,000.  RPU continually investigates innovative technologies to help customers realize the best value from the services they receive.  Current initiatives include fuel cell research, wind power, and photovoltaic offerings.

 

 

 

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No rate increase proposed for electric utility for the third straight year and fifth straight year for the water utility

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Rochester Public Utilities (RPU) staff will present the 2012 budget proposal, this afternoon, to the RPU Board with a recommendation of no rate increase for the electric or water utility. This marks the third straight year without a rate increase for the electric utility and fifth straight year without a general rate increase for the water utility. The RPU Board will hear the budget proposal at the October board meeting and will take action on the budget at a special board meeting on November 15.

 

“Plain and simple, a zero percent rate increase during these tough economic times is the right thing for our customers. Holding the budgets at 2011 levels is only possible because of the dedication of our employees. We will maintain our current budget levels without compromising our core values of safety and reliability in our service,” said RPU general manager Larry Koshire.

 

RPU is committed to being fiscally sound during the continued tough economic times. However, keeping budget levels flat over the last two years has proven to be challenging due to increased operating costs.

 

In order to sustain the reductions from the 2010 and 2011 budgets, RPU staff has worked diligently to ensure that reductions were made in places that will not compromise core components of RPU’s business. Some of the significant business drivers for the electric utility in 2012 include:

 

·         Commitment to community to have no electric rate increase for the third year during continuing tough economic times while supporting our mission statement and strategic initiatives;

·         Continue holding approved staff positions open to evaluate need while adding two positions  to support the customer and system growth;

·         SMMPA’s Board approved rates with no increase for 2012, SMMPA, continues to be a significant operating expense at approximately $89 million or about 68% of our operating costs;

·         Lack of demand and low prices in MISO market has made the Silver Lake Plant uncompetitive this past year, and RPU is projecting few wholesale sales from this facility in 2012;

·         Achieving our energy conservation goals through continued work with residential and commercial customers;

·         Continuing our participation in CAPX 2020 initiative to expand the electric transmission grid to ensure reliable and affordable service; and

·         Continuing to implement Smart Grid education and possible pilot projects.

 

Significant business drivers for the water utility include:

 

·         Continued water conservation programs and education;

·         Slowdown in new development;

·         New reservoir to be constructed in 2013 and 2014; and

·         Addition of one water operator to support water system growth.

 

 

The RPU Board will act on the proposed electric and water budgets at a special November Board Meeting on Tuesday, November 15 at 4 p.m. at the RPU Service Center. Final budget approval will come from the Rochester City Council on November 21 at 7 p.m.

 

For more information on RPU or the proposed 2012 budget, please contact Tony Benson at 507-280-1534 or email at tbenson@rpu.org.

 

 

About Rochester Public Utilities

 

As the municipal utility of Rochester, Minn., for more than 110 years, RPU provides high-quality and reliable electricity to over 47,000 customers.  Water customers number more than 36,000.  RPU continually investigates innovative technologies to help customers realize the best value from the services they receive.  Current initiatives include fuel cell research, wind power, and photovoltaic offerings.

 

 

 

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RPU staff present 2011 budget proposal to Board with no rate increase for electric and water utility recommended

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Rochester Public Utilities (RPU) staff presented the proposed 2011 budget to the RPU Board with a recommendation of no rate increase for the electric or water utility at the RPU Board meeting on Tuesday. This marks the second straight year that RPU has held spending and recommended no rate increase for either utility.

 

“We have worked diligently to cut and reduce spending in order to present a budget to the Board that does not include a rate increase. We are confident that we presented a sound budget that is in the best interest of our customers,” said RPU general manager Larry Koshire.

 

Areas that were addressed in order to maintain a level budget for 2011 include:

 

       No FTE increases and unfilled positions will be evaluated and will be held open

       Reductions in facility maintenance and construction has been made

       Deferring capital projects where applicable

 

The RPU Board will act on the proposed electric and water budgets at a special November Board Meeting on Tuesday, November 9 at 4 p.m. at the RPU Service Center. Final budget approval will come from the Rochester City Council on November 15 at 7 p.m.

 

For more information on RPU, the proposed 2011 budget, please contact Tony Benson at 507-280-1534 or email at tbenson@rpu.org.

 

 

About Rochester Public Utilities

 

As the municipal utility of Rochester, Minn., for more than 110 years, RPU provides high-quality and reliable electricity to over 47,000 customers.  Water customers number more than 36,000.  RPU continually investigates innovative technologies to help customers realize the best value from the services they receive.  Current initiatives include fuel cell research, wind power, and photovoltaic offerings.

 

 

 

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