LP&L board recommends 90-day suspension of payment plan fee - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

LP&L board recommends 90-day suspension of payment plan fee

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

For the time ever, the Lubbock Power & Light Electric Utility Board allowed public comments at Wednesday's meeting.

Citizens took the podium with one common complaint - a massive problem with LP&L and their recent rate hike.

One lady said she felt like eggs were thrown at her during last night's city council meeting when the council rejected the motion to push back the rate increase.

"This is wrong," she told the board members. "I see LP&L as a sinking ship if this continues to go on."

Citizens voiced their frustrations about the payment plan option and the $30 fee tacked on when a customer representative sets it up.

LP&L staff members explained the different options for setting up a payment plan such as the integrated voice response and the touch-tone service.

The board went into Executive Session from 2:45 p.m. until 4:30 p.m.

In Open Session, they discussed LP&L's finances, including debt issues, reserve account funding, cost allocation, and revenue and expense projections.

LP&L staff members maintain that the rate increase was necessary after a $3.2 million dollar loss last year. They said if they held back the rate increase until Oct. 1, they would have continued to lose money.

They also discussed the reconnection fee. One board members requested a complete list of fees that the call center charges to customers and Councilman Victor Hernandez requested an explanation of those costs.

Open session wrapped up with more public comments, one from a frustrated Texas Tech student explaining how the rate increase affects students on a fixed income.

The board recommended that the city council eliminate the $30 fee for customers to sign up for a payment plan for the next 90 days.

Mayor Glen Robertson says that item will be added to the next city council meeting and be voted on as early as next week.

You can find more details about LP&L payment options here.

Copyright 2013 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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