- Published on Tuesday, 11 March 2014 16:48
- Written by Super User
WILMINGTON, NC : March 12, 2014 - The Cape Fear Public Utility Authority announced the results of the UNC Environmental Finance Center's annual study of 2014 NC Water and Wastewater Rates Dashboard (with financial benchmarks). For the first time, the authors have provided the public with an interactive dashboard that shows just how favorably CFPUA stands out versus other water utilities across the state. At the heart of the study is an interactive tool at that allows you to see exactly where your current water and wastewater rates at various consumption levels. Using the dashboard, CFPUA customers and interested parties will be able to see the Authority's performance - placing it in the GREEN, optimal zone - in just about every performance category for both water and sewer rates including: affordability, bill comparison to other utilities and cost recovery.
More than 70% of the state's utilities, 372 total, took part in the study. In addition giving current information, the dashboard provides sliders the customer can use to mark CFPUA average consumption per month (4,500 gallons) AND the 4.4% rate proposal and see how it impacts CFPUA and its customers in these areas. As one can see by going to http://www.efc.sog.unc.edu/reslib/item/north-carolina-water-and-wastewater-rates-dashboard#, the needles do not move very much. CFPUA stays right squarely in the heart of the GREEN, utility optimum levels for affordability, bill comparison to other utilities and cost recovery. CFPUA's financial condition also received high marks yet again; it hit the GREEN, optimum zone for six of its eight categories including: revenues v. expenditures, debt service coverage ratio, operating budget ratio, cash on hand, quick ratio, and asset depreciation. Because split percentages could not be used, we moved the average consumption to 5,000 gallons/month (10,000 per bill period) and the rate increase to 4%. There was no discernable change when the average consumption was slid down to 4,000/month and/or the rate proposal up to 5% (but you can find out for yourself…)
The study was released just as CFPUA's full board considers rate proposals for FY '15. A public meeting will be held in the Lucie Harrell Conference Room located in the New Hanover County Administration Building, 230 Government Center Drive, Wilmington, North Carolina. The hearing will commence at 9 a.m., on Wednesday, March 12, 2014, at which time any person may be heard regarding water and sewer rates. The full CFPUA’s board regular meeting Monthly Authority meeting will commence immediately following the public hearing.
"The staff at CFPUA is working hard every day to ensure that we balance the need to keep our systems both sustainable and affordable," said Jim Flechtner, Cape Fear Utility Authority Executive Director. "This UNC study is just the latest example of how their diligence and expertise is continuing to put forth financial proposals that are strong, considerate and care for the customer, both now and for future generations."
In addition to the intuitive Rate Comparison dashboard , the Environmental Finance Center's study including the following info:
Tables listing each utility’s water, wastewater and irrigation rate structures and monthly bill charges for various consumption amounts for residential and commercial customers. You may download the tables in PDF or MS Excel format.
• Tables listing each utility’s water, wastewater and irrigation rate structures and monthly bill charges for various consumption amounts for residential and commercial customers; and
• A final report that summarizes the state of rates and rate structures in North Carolina. The report contains hyperlinks to answers to Frequently Asked Questions, covering areas like Tools for Comparisons and Current Rates.
Visit http://www.cfpua.org to view the study and other related information.