Chelan County PUD Commissioners Review Building Blocks of Next Year’s Budget
- Written by Kimberlee Craig, CCPUD
Key assumptions include no increase in electric rates and need to create value for customer-owners
WENATCHEE, WA – Chelan County PUD commissioners and staff Monday reviewed the key assumptions for writing the District’s 2015 budget, including the expectation that proposed projects and staffing will create long-term value for the District’s customer-owners.
Mark O’Bryan , strategic financial planning director, said items in next year’s budget will align with the five-year business plans, meet or exceed compliance, regulatory and safety requirements and include a look at the scope of projects to confirm the best value for the PUD and its customers.
Among the key assumptions are no change in retail electric, water and wastewater rates or wholesale fiber rates. Plans are to pay down another $122.6 million in long-term debt. Other factors are:
- Limited additional impacts from the Wanapum Dam drawdown
- Some improvement in power market prices
- Continued low interest rates on investments
- Continued regulatory requirement increases
Some of the major projects forecast for next year are refurbishing two generating units at Rock Island Dam, camping upgrades at Lincoln Rock State Park, the fiber network BPON to GPON upgrade, a new substation in Cashmere and repairs to the first of the four large units at Rocky Reach Dam.
Commissioners will start review of the proposed 2015 budget at a 1 p.m. hearing on Nov. 3 during the next regular board meeting. Discussions will continue on Nov. 17 with a second hearing. Staff plans to ask for board approval of the budget on Dec. 1.
In other business Monday, commissioners:
- Reviewed the next steps in strategic planning. The goal is to have the new plan in place by March 30, 2015, said George Velazquez, strategic project manager. Topic teams have evaluated more than 1,100 ideas from customer-owners and employees to develop sets of options. Commissioners emphasized the need for topic team members to be neutral in presenting the options. A guide summarizing the options is being written to share them with the community. Commissioners will preview the guide on Nov. 3. Details on the timeline for gathering community feedback will be posted on www.ourpublicpower.org.
Stehekin Community Fall Festival
- Written by Herb Sargo
Fire Safety Tips for Fall
- Written by Faye Barker, CFR
When the weather turns cold most people spend more time inside their homes using fireplaces, furnaces, and heaters to keep warm. There's nothing quite as cozy as a fire, but it presents some safety hazards. Keep these tips in mind.
Service Your Furnace Before the cold autumn and winter weather sets in, be sure to call your heating and cooling company to service your furnace. A specialist should inspect the furnace to make sure everything is in working order and that there are no leaks.
Use Fireplaces Safely Keep that fire in its proper place by using a fireplace screen to keep sparks from flying out of the fireplace. Never leave a burning fire unattended, and make sure a fire in a fireplace is completely out before going to bed. Have your chimney checked and cleaned annually before using it.
Use Caution with Space Heaters A space heater can be an effective way to warm up a chilly room, but it's essential that you read the instructions on the unit before you use it. If your space heater requires venting, make sure you have vented it to the outdoors. Never use your stove or oven to heat your home; only use space heaters that are approved for this purpose. Always allow at least three feet of empty area around space heaters.
Reconsider Leaf Burning The Air Defenders reports that burning leaves produces dangerous and cancer-causing chemicals and urges homeowners to avoid disposing of leaves this way. If you decide to burn leaves, wear a protective mask. Burning leaves should only be attempted far away from a house or other structures on a homeowner's property. Always check the weather forecast before starting to burn leaves. This activity should not be attempted in windy conditions. Contact your local fire department to make sure it is ok to burn.
Lora Cleveland Photos at Manson Library Through November
- Written by Betty Pettit
Photo artist Lora Cleveland has a display of her work hung at the Manson Library.
Her photos include some taken in faraway places and some from very close to home. Lora lives in Chelan and belongs to the Lake Chelan Art Alliance. Her work will be featured through November.
Visit http://www.lpcleve.wix.com/loracleveland to learn more about this artist.
Manson Library is open Mondays and Tuesdays from 12:30 to 5:30, Wednesdays from 10:30 to 5:30 and Thursdays from 12:30 to 6:30.
Cardboard Boats Float Creativity at Manson High School
- Written by Janice Stewart
Manson high school students put their knowledge of boat building to the ultimate test this past Wednesday.
Over the past three weeks students have been studying boat building; how they are constructed, the parts of boats, what makes them float and why. They have used math skills in figuring displacement, volume, buoyancy, center of buoyance, and draft of a boat. Students had to produce sketches and designs of different types of boats and then work effectively as a group to built one or two prototypes from heavy construction paper. They then had to float them in a pool to see how they would react when weight is added in the form of golf balls.
After observing their success and failure’s student then went to scales in the form of cardboard and duct tape. It was a great learning experience for all students involved as well as the many parents and community members that attended and witnessed the show!