March 1, 2010
MONDAY 6:00 PM
Water and Light Office
The meeting duly noticed and warned was called to order at 6:02 PM.
PRESENT: Trustees: Tim Sargent, Ed DeBor, Wally Reeve, and Dana Wildes
Staff: Craig Myotte, Jim Fontaine, and Penny Jones, Linda Osgood
ABSENT: Trustee Bourne
1) PUBLIC MEETING:
No members of the public were in attendance.
6) APPROVE 2009 AUDIT REPORT:
Greg Sargent of Kittell, Brannagan, & Sargent was available via speaker phone to answer any Board questions on the 2009 audit recently completed.
On a motion by Trustee DeBor, seconded by Trustee Wildes and approved by all present, the Board approved the 2009 Audit Report.
4) APPROVE MINUTES OF MEETING HELD FEBRUARY 22, 2010:
On a motion by Trustee DeBor, seconded by Trustee Reeve and approved by all present, the Board approved the amended minutes of the regular meeting held February 22, 2010.
8) REVIEW VILLAGE ANNUAL MEETING AND REPORT MATERIALS:
Article #6 has been reworded to eliminate the confusion it creates every year as to what is being approved.
On a motion by Trustee DeBor, seconded by Trustee Wildes and approved by all present, the Board approved the amendment of Article #6 of the Village Warning.
Article #7 is asking for voter’s approval to execute a Purchase&Sale agreement with the Trust for Public Lands (TPL) for the Zackwoods property. We will also include a one-page summary of what MW&L intends to do with the proceeds. The Trustees want it to be clear that the funds would be used to upgrade our own hydro projects and that the State will be preserving the land, not MW&L.
Trustee DeBor wants the wording on Article #5 to be exactly as last year. There are $11,590 in General Expenses. $11,590 will be raised through taxes. Strike the language about the Grant flow-through.
On a motion by Trustee Reeve, seconded by Trustee DeBor and approved by all present, the Board approved the Warning for the 2010 Annual Village Meeting.
Craig asked the Trustees to approve a change in the Capital Budget resulting in a net change of zero. The Board had approved five capital projects but we are facing a “exclusive facilities” charge for the new 115 KV line into Stowe for approximately $200,000. Craig is currently in negotiations with Stowe and GMP over the allocation of costs. Stowe agreed to pay 100% of the exclusive facilities costs up to a capped amount. Stowe is stating it may need to charge GMP and MW&L for wheeling services out of the new VELCO substation. Craig wants MW&L to pay for and own a portion of the ring bus that ring to eliminate any risk of any 34.5 kV wheeling charges. Trustee DeBor asked what the impact would be in delaying the original five projects. Jim replied they are all needed projects. He wants to coordinate connecting Substation #1 to the 34.5 KV system with the installation of crest controls on Dam #1 as the plant will need to be de-energized for either project. Trustee DeBor asked what the impact on rates would be if we left in the original five projects and still added the $200,000 bus ring. It would be a 3% impact on top of the 3% rate increase they are already budgeting for. Trustee Reeve wondered if we could find a middle ground of the bus-ring and ½ of the original projects, thereby keeping the rate increase to 4 or 4.5%.
On a motion by Trustee Reeve, seconded by Trustee DeBor and approved by all present, the Board approved the Capital Budget by adding $200,000 for the Stowe Sub bus ring, adding back in four capital projects, and removing the $88,000 Sub #1 upgrade (which can wait until 2011). This may result in a 4% electric rate increase.
The Board approved the dedication of the Village Report to Andrew Jensvold as written.
5) APPROVE 2009 WARRANT OF EXPENSES:
On a motion by Trustee DeBor, seconded by Trustee Reeve and approved by all present, the Board approved the 2009 Warrant of Expenses.
On a motion by Trustee Reeve, seconded by Trustee Wildes and approved by all present, the Board approved the 2009 General Government Expenses as presented by Mary Ann Wilson.
The Board approved the Manager’s Report and the Trustees Report for the upcoming Village meeting.
2) CURRENT PRIORITY PROJECTS:
3) MANAGEMENT REPORT:
Keymont has almost completed the punch-list for the WWTF and the construction trailers have been removed. We have still not received any word from RD on funding for the headworks project. The Trustees asked if we could make money treating other people’s sludge. It is possible but we must be very careful what is in the sludge. We are also looking at Johnson’s sludge composting facility that they built but never used.
We are kicking off the relicensing of our hydro facilities. There is a lot of work ahead. Trustee Reeve verified that no one was questioning the future of our run-of-the-river dams.
9) OTHER BUSINESS:
Jim and Penny have been working on possible water and sewer rates. Under the most recent revision, large meters with low usage will see the biggest jump in fees. The Board asked Staff to also look at tiered rates. FA&A recommends collecting 60% of revenue through customer charges to offset future conservation. The Board asked that Staff look at dropping that to 50% and collect more on the usage rates. Jim replied we will look at 45-50% as the base rate and see where it goes. They will also try some rate tiers. Trustee DeBor reminded them it is easier to defend rates based on usage and suggested starting with 50/50 instead of 60/40. Jim also suggested starting with one tier to keep it simple.
10) EXECUTIVE SESSION:
At 8:37 PM, on a motion by Trustee Reeve, seconded by Trustee Wildes and approved by all present, the Board adjourned the meeting.
Edward DeBor, Clerk