For LP&L it was a day of adding insult to injury. On Wednesday the city council opened up the books at LP&L and asked for the public's understanding. By Thursday afternoon, over 300 customers had said goodbye.
"We've hit a bump in the road. We can fix it. We will fix it," said Councilman Gary Boren, speaking on behalf of a wounded LP&L. The utility announced a rate hike Wednesday to dig itself out of an $18 million hole.
The news spurred over 300 customers to leave for a lower rate. The financial impact? An estimated loss of over $288,000 a year. Gone in a day and a half.
"We're asking you to, as you've entrusted us, to give us the opportunity to fix it," he said. Fixing it, unfortunately requires raising rates by nearly 14%, bumping up the average bill by $10 a month, while their competition remains 20% cheaper.
Boren says jumping ship isn't the answer, and says now is a time for loyalty to a utility that has a history of helping Lubbock. "It's paid for parks, police, firemen, and made an invaluable contribution to our way of life in Lubbock," he says.
Boren stressed that the past culture of LP&L is gone, hoping to inspire confidence in a public ready and willing to leave.