TMWA’s Board of Directors has voted to defer a 2.5 percent rate increase that was scheduled to be implemented in May 2019. The deferral includes all customer classes. The vote took place at the Board of Directors meeting on Dec. 13, 2018.
“Given TMWA’s positive financial position, the Board can deliver some good news to our customers,” said Vaughn Hartung, TMWA’s chairman of the board. “Rate increases are necessary at times, but we are happy to announce that TMWA’s forecasted financial conditions can accommodate this rate deferral.”
TMWA’s financial factors that contributed to this deferral include unseasonably warm summers in the past three years, which resulted in increased water sales. Also, near-term flows in the Truckee River are projected to be enough to allow operation of our hydroelectric plants at near capacity levels. Last year, the three plants on the Truckee River generated an all-time high of $3.7 million in hydroelectric power revenue which offset almost all of TMWA’s power costs. Additionally, increases in interest returns on TMWA’s bonds and higher than anticipated cash balances resulted in higher investment earnings.
Given the positive changes in TMWA’s financial situation, TMWA staff and the Standing Advisory Committee (SAC) recommended that the Board defer the 2.5 percent rate increase scheduled for May 2019 and move it to May 2020. They also recommended that the Board reconsider the scheduled May 2021 and May 2022 increases at a later date. TMWA’s funding plan will be updated again in the fall of 2019, and the Board and SAC will reexamine TMWA’s financial position to decide if a rate increase is necessary in 2020.