Montevideo's new electric franchise would allow fee
MONTEVIDEO -- City Council members in Montevideo approved the first reading of a new, 20-year franchise agreement with Xcel Energy, which provides electrical service in the community.
The franchise agreement approved at Monday's council meeting is very similar to the agreement now expiring, but it does provide a provision that would allow the city to charge an annual franchise fee, said City Manager Steve Jones.
He said the city does not intend to impose a franchise fee at this time.
The franchise agreement would allow the city to impose a fee of up to 5 percent of the gross revenues collected in the service territory.
A second reading of the agreement is required before it is adopted.
In other business, council members adopted a new wastewater permit with Jennie-O Turkey Store, one of the largest industrial contributors to the city's system.
The new permit sets parameters for the volume and strength of effluent discharged into the system, and determines how fees will be set.
The city is in the process of a major expansion of its wastewater treatment plant, and new rates will be adopted when the development and operation costs are known. The new agreement establishes the framework for setting the new rates, according to Jones.
The new wastewater treatment is designed to meet new, stricter phosphorus discharge limits.