New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 13, 1985, New Braunfels, Texas
Thursday, June 13,1985 5LCRA ruling to mean lower rates
BySANDRAJACKSON Staff writer
Pedemales Electric Cooperative members can expect a decrease in electric rates as a result of action taken last week by the Texas Public Utility Commission in ordering a rate decrease by PEC’s wholesale power supplier.
PEC, along with the Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative and the cities of Bastrop, Smithville and Giddings, intervened and took exception to the proposed $35.1 million increase sought by the Lower Colorado River Authority. I<ast week in Austin, the PUC ordered an overall $34.3 million decrease by LCRA.
The commission’s actions went beyond those recommended by PUC hearings examiner Henry Card, who issued a 79-page report recommending an overall $21
million decrease after presiding over the March hearings.
PEC officials aren’t venturing a guess as to just how much the rates will go down until they get more information from LCRA.
“We won’t know for about six weeks,” said PEC spokesman Bill Cunningham. “It will take LCRA that long to run it through their computers and get a new rate structure,” he explained.
Earlier in the PUC proceedings, PEC officials were looking at an approximate seven percent decrease in their rates, if the commission followed their recommendations.
LCRA had filed for a $35.1 million increase in its base rates — with no change in its fuel rate.
Instead, it received only an increase of $10.9 million in its base rate and a mandated decrease of $45.3 million in
its fuel rate.
The commission not only slashed the method of calculating fuel expenses more than the examiner had recommended but cut nearly another $1 million in the base rate.
The major factor in the large fuel rate decrease was the commission’s decision not to allow LCRA to buy cheaper fuel supplies without passing the savings on to its customers.
LCRA broke a coal supply contract with Decker Coal Co. of Montana last April and began buying cheaper coal on the spot market. However, it proposed to continue collecting from its customers at the Decker rates and placing the difference in an escrow account.
The commission voted to disallow the escrow account. LCRA’s violation of the Decker contract has prompted a
lawsuit by the coal company.
Payments to LCRA constitute almost 70 percent of each PEC member’s bill. Pedernales supplies electricity to Canyon I^ake area residents in Comal County.
All was not good news for PEC consumers, however, as the commission also overruled a Card recommendation that would have prohibited LCRA from penalizing PEC for the high usage of electricity in winter months.
The commission reinstated a system which will allow LCRA to set a minimum demand charge as part of its rates based on electric useage during winter months — when PEC normally reaches its peak.
In addition, the PUC has directed its staff to conduct an inquiry into alleged cost overruns at the LCRA’s proposed Fayette 3 lignite power plant due to changes in the mining plan.
Members worry about losing Weather Service radar
With only four of the nine directors in attendance, members of the Canyon I^ake Chamber of Commerce took little action at their quarterly meeting held Thursday at Eagles Hall.
Business manager George Collins told those in attendance that the Chamber has 24 new members, bringing the total membership to 163. However, only 105 of those have paid their dues this year.
“Some of them had a little rough luck due to the snow and the drought last year. We want to retain these memberships, so I’ve told them there will be no pressure,” Collins said.
Although Chamber members received a report at their March meeting that the National Weather Service radar station was almost a sure thing for Canyon Lake, they got a different story at the June meeting.
“It looks like we’re losing out to the New Braunfels Airport,” said director Rich Linden. “The weather people aren’t happy about it, but we need a piece of property with an elevation of about 1,200 feet that someone is willing to lease to the government.”
Jess I^egett, an area resident, said
he has some land with an elevation of over 1,100 feet and he would be willing to talk about it. Plans wre made to contact government officials immediately.
Chamber president Ralph Richey said tourist brochures have not yet gone to the printer, because all of the ads haven’t been sold. He also reported that six of the eight new signs have been installed.
Attorney Ed Nolan, who was on the agenda for the Thursday meeting, never showed up. Richey had asked him to attend to update the membership on the incorporation of the Chamber, which the attorney has been handling.
“We were supposed to sign some papers tonight and send them in to the state,” Richey said.
The next regular meeting of the general membership will be the first Thursday in September, when a committee will be formed to nominate three new board members to be elected for 1986. One director will be elected from each of three areas — Sattler, Starkville and Hancock.
Besides Richey and Ijndell, the other directors present were Jim Jensen and Charlene Hurst.
Village West elects 4 new directors
Property owners in Canyon Lake Village West elected four new directors at the annual membership meeting Saturday night.
They are James Guhlin, R. K. (Pete) Saunders, John Wilhelm and Ed Lang, and they replace Marian Schmidt, BU Beam, Les Kahtoff and Ernest Roesler.
Association president Joel Collins said 44 property owners attended the meeting, representing 64 percent of the total population of the subdivision.
Members were notified of the foUowing board action:
-Residents who do not pay their annual assessment wiU no longer be permitted to use the pool facilities as guests of a paying property owner.
-Use of the pool faculties wiU no longer be extended to persons living in other subdivisions who have previously been accepted as associate members.
The annual general membership meeting of the Pedernales Electric Cooperative, Inc., will be held Saturday in the Johnson City High School. Registration begins at noon and the meeting wiU convene at 2 p.m. All persons having electric service with the PEC are eligible to vote for three directors and three advisory directors.
Homemade goodies will be offered for sale Saturday, June 29, by members of the Ald Association for Lutherans at Country Boy super-
Outgoing Canyon Lake Evening Lions Club president George Perkins hands the gavel to incoming president Dr. Joe Goff, while incoming Lioness president Birqit
SANDRA JACKSON HERALD ZEITUNG
Olsen and her predecessor, Gu Ree Beam, look on New officers were installed Friday
at St. Thomas Pavilion.
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-All improved lots in Village West (those with homes built on them) will be assessed the $24 per year fee, regardless of how many lots are owned by a single property owner.
ColUns said members at the meeting also discussed the need for an unproved air conditioning system and a new roof at the subdivision clubhouse on Ann Drive.
Board members were made aware of a hazardous situation arising when children dive from the sliding board rather than sliding into the water at the swimming pool. Parents of young children are urged to instruct them on the proper use of the facilities.
The need to build a higher fence around the swimming pool was also discussed. Members would like to see the present four-foot high fence replaced with a six- or eight-foot high fence for improved security.
Directors will elect new officers at their Wednesday meeting.
market in Sattler. The sale, which will benefit the Canyon Lake Ambulance Service Project, will begin at 9 a rn. and last until all baked goods are sold.
Members of the Canyon Lake Republican Women’s Club will have their regular monthly business meeting (Mi June 19 at I p.m. in Scarborough Hall, Church in the Valley. A program on Americanism will be given by Lucille Tamez. The meetuig will be preceded by coffee and dessert.
At PEC helping you is a top priority.
We are ready to put ail our communication resources to work for you. There are 132 radio-equipped vehicles plus six base stations all ready to help when you need us.
Some areas of the Mill Country can seem very desolate when an emergency arises or you have car trouble. Therefore, having access to the best communication system in the area is vital. PEC makes communication possible in the most remote areas as well as on busy highways.
In addition, PEC crews are often on the roads during treacherous weather repairing lines. They can provide assistance when the weather causes unexpected problems for you.
Every time you see a PEC logo, remember—we are willing and able to help if you need us.
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A Line of Help