The Grays Harbor PUD have approved their 2020 budget, including a possible increase to customers and $10 million for capital projects.
The PUD Board of Commissioners concluded the 2020 budget process recently, unanimously approving a $127-million budget for the coming year that maintains utility services, with over 70% of the 2020 spending plan will go to power purchases, and $10-million being spent on capital projects to renew and replace utility infrastructure.
Of the $10-million capital budget, the PUD says that $4.2-million will be spent on the utility distribution system, just over $2-million each on the utility general plant and transmission system and $1.6-million on the PUD’s substations.
They note projects including replacing aging equipment throughout the utility system, beginning work on replacing the 90 year old Chehalis River tower crossing, transformer and breaker replacement at substations throughout Grays Harbor, the replacement of two utility fleet line trucks and the continued growth of the PUD’s telecommunications system.
PUD customers may see a 2% increase in utility rates, beginning in May of 2020. With 72% of utility costs tied to power purchases, PUD Board Vice President Arie Callaghan says the increase will cover the rising costs for those purchases, but will not be implemented until after the cooler winter temperatures have passed and the 2020 financial realities are clearer.