Author: Matt Harris (page 1 of 2)

Effective Utility Management

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Guest author Catherine Noyes is an Associate Consultant at Raftelis Financial Consultants.

Through the 1960s, the utility business was all about protecting public health – making sure that technology was in place to ensure safe and reliable water and wastewater service to a growing population.  In the 1970s, the focus on public health was expanded to include the environment.  The EPA was established, and the federal government enacted legislation to protect clean air and water.  With this legislation came large federal grants, which funded expansions to the nation’s water and sewer infrastructure. Continue reading

Cost-Indexed Rate Increases

Guest author Peiffer Brandt is the Chief Operating Officer at Raftelis Financial Consultants.

“Patrick Cannon… voted twice against raising our water fee.  That means a lot for senior citizens, families, and individuals on fixed income.  He deserves our selective vote.”  In 2011, Patrick Cannon campaigned for re-election using this testimonial to demonstrate his fiscal prudence.  He was re-elected to serve on the Charlotte City Council with the most votes of any at-large candidate, and as a result, became Charlotte’s Mayor Pro Tem.

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Sewerage & Water Board of New Orleans Gains Rate Increase Approval

Guest author Peiffer Brandt is the Chief Operating Officer at Raftelis Financial Consultants.

“New Orleans Sewerage & Water Board customers will see their monthly water and sewer rates more than double by 2020 after the City Council voted 5-2 Thursday to implement rate hikes on Jan. 1. Rates will jump 10 percent every year for the next eight years …” so began a December 6th Times Picayune article.

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Driving Rates: Get a 2012 Georgia Rates Dashboard Tune-Up

Matt Harris is the Marketing and Outreach Coordinator for the Environmental Finance Center.

The etymology of the word “dashboard” is an interesting story of technological change and innovation over time.  Originally the name given to the plank(s) of wood or leather in front of a horse-drawn carriage to keep out mud “dashed” from the movement of the carriage, over the course of history the word “dashboard” and the actual technology associated with this part of the vehicle, has advanced significantly.  With the automobile humans added complex navigational and control instrumentation to the mud-blocking area to continue protecting the driver from the myriad of problems created by moving at unnatural speeds.  It is no surprise that the business and financial communities have adopted the metaphorical language of the dashboard technology.

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Breaking News: Utility Rates have Continued to Increase Over the Last Two Years

Guest Author Rocky Craley is a Senior Consultant at Raftelis Financial Consultants.

Breaking News:  Utility rates have continued to increase over the last two years, according to the 2012 Water and Wastewater Rate Survey.  That’s the highest-level survey summary, which is (admittedly) not very groundbreaking.  But digging into the national rate survey provides a little more information than that – actually, quite a bit more.  Surveys such as this provide insights into the water and wastewater industry that enable utility executives, staff and other industry professionals to benchmark rates and key utility metrics against peer utilities.  Utilities also use survey data as supplemental information to convey the state of the industry and effectively educate decision makers.

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