Lubbock City Council not raising LP&L rates - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Lubbock City Council not raising LP&L rates

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

Lubbock Power and Light rates will not be raised for now. The LP&L board recommended a rate increase to the City Council Wednesday, but no action was taken.

That's because Councilman Victor Hernandez made a motion to consider the hike and it died for lack of a second.

The concern for LP&L is that they have been losing money for several months. Right now the company says it is negative $7 million.

Even though your eclectic bill will not increase for now, Councilman Floyd Price says that will have to change.

"Eventually we are going to have a rate increase. We are going to have it, because I don't see LP&L functioning with losing money every day," Price said.

LP&L says in March they had $9.8 million to spend on business operations. In April, that number was $5 million. If profits keep dwindling, LP&L explains they will have to tap into their $47.3 million reserve. If the savings decrease in that fund board chairman Mike Davis says they will have to take out loans.

"We could be borrowing money to operate and I can tell you I hate that. I am not a fan," said Davis.

Council members say LP&L should make up its losses in the summer months when customers are using more electricity. When the fiscal year ends on September 30th, the council says they will look at the budget and possibly decide again on the rate hike.

The proposed electricity rate hike would have increased LP&L's overall revenue 7%. Lubbock Power and Light Spokesman Chris Sims says the change in rate would have cost an average household an additional $10 a month.

Newly elected Mayor Glen Robertson served on the LP&L board for 14 months. During that time, he learned that although LP&L would predict a deficit for the fiscal year, surplus revenue would be made up through the summer months. The Mayor says he would not consider a rate increase until he could see the actual hard numbers when the year is over; not mere estimations.

Copyright 2012 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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