Now that our first Town Hall meeting is behind us, I have had a bit of time to contemplate public comments and questions. For those who were not at the town hall, there were many good questions that were asked, perspectives shared, and valid concerns raised. While some residents made comments of support, the overall message that I heard was that you want more details and specifics.
In response, I will be taking the questions that seem to have the greatest interest, and I will treat each one as their own topic for discussion. Rather than hastily answering many questions at once (which would be a disservice to you), I will take each question and explore it in greater detail as its own blog post in the coming months. I will try to provide supporting material whenever appropriate. My hope is that by taking this approach, not only will your questions will be more completely answered, but I can commit the appropriate time to further researching each question in greater detail prior to presenting any agreements for city council approval this fall.
My desire is to do the greatest amount of good for the greatest amount of people with an eye toward the future. In order to accomplish this, I will do my level best to take an objective view of each of these questions and communicate a comprehensive perspective to you. Here are some of the questions I will be reporting to you on between now and this fall.
- What is the perspective of other city mayors and council members who have chosen to retain/sell their own utility services and how does that apply to Eagle Mountain’s situation?
- What were the appraisals for the Electric and Gas and are we getting paid what they are worth?
- Can we start a co-op? Like Dixie Escalante?
- With the current infrastructure, how long will it be before we need to build for additional capacity?
- If we keep growing, won’t we just use that increased revenue to pay off our bonds?
- Why should we give up control of our utilities? We won’t have any control over rates, right?
- What will happen when the administrative transfer is gone? How will we make up the 250K in revenue? Are there any other revenues that we will need to make up?
- When we changed over to UFA, the increase in tax was supposed to be compensated for with a lowering of the electric rate, will we be giving away our ability to keep the same low rates?
- Will you just be raising property taxes to compensate for the loss of the administrative transfer?
- Do we have to sell both utilities? Can we sell one and not the other?
- What challenges lie ahead if we keep/sell the utilities?
- Will we pay a different rate than other customers with the new utility companies or will that cost be shared across the board (potentially lowering our rate)?
These blog posts should keep me busy for a little while, but if you have a question that I have not asked, don’t hesitate to leave it as a comment and I will do my best to address your concern. I hope you will bear with me as I work my way through these questions. I look forward to digging deeper.