FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Melissa Krause
Chief Communications and Strategy Officer
830.629.8440 | firstname.lastname@example.org
(New Braunfels, TX – April 28, 2022) – Today, the New Braunfels Utilities (NBU) Board of Trustees appointed an 18-member Rate Advisory Committee to help ensure NBU maintains fair and equitable rates based on the cost of providing service to its residential, commercial, and industrial customer classes.
In October 2020, the New Braunfels City Council approved a three-year rate plan for NBU, which took effect on November 1, 2020. In April 2023, NBU will go before City Council to propose a new rate plan to continue to meet the growing demands of providing essential services to our community.
To help determine the total costs of providing service to our customers and equitably allocate those costs to each customer class, the NBU Board of Trustees commissioned a consultant to complete a Cost of Service Study. Freese and Nichols, Incorporated will be the lead consultant performing NBU’s water and wastewater cost of service study. New Gen Strategies and Solutions, LLC will be the sub-consultant performing NBU’s electric cost of service study. These consultants will work with teams across NBU to complete the comprehensive water, wastewater, and electric Cost of Service Study.
As the Cost of Service Study is in development, NBU teams will work simultaneously with the NBU Rate Advisory Committee to share data to assist the committee in analyzing rate design alternatives for recommendations to the NBU Board of Trustees. The Rate Advisory Committee will facilitate the flow of ideas and concerns from the community to NBU staff and the Board of Trustees.
The Rate Advisory Committee will serve until the 2022-2023 Cost of Service Study is completed in March 2023. New Braunfels Utilities will present the new rate design structure to the New Braunfels City Council in April 2023.
New Braunfels Utilities Rate Advisory Committee comprises members selected throughout NBU’s service territory. New Braunfels City Council nominated seven members. New Braunfels Utilities chose the remaining 11 members to represent all customers classes, including health care, recreational, seasonal, tourism, manufacturing, large retail, small business, school district, nonprofit/affordable housing, developer/builder, and multifamily residential customers.
It is anticipated that the Rate Advisory Committee will hold approximately five to six meetings throughout the 2022-2023 Cost of Service and Rate Design Study, with its first meeting in May 2022. These meetings will be open to the public and posted in accordance with the Texas Open Meetings Act at nbutexas.com/rate-advisory-committee.
“The process for setting utility rates needs to be transparent and open to all,” said NBU Chief Executive Officer Ian Taylor. “We have an opportunity through this process to make sure our community-owned utilities are affordable while ensuring the safety and resiliency of our water supply, protecting the quality of our rivers and streams, and maintaining best in class electric reliability.”
Members of the 2022-2023 NBU Rate Advisory Committee include:
Dr. Les Shepard, Chair– Mayoral Nomination
Stuart Blythin – District 1 Nomination
Justin Meadows, Vice-Chair – District 2 Nomination
Mark Hampton – District 3 Nomination
Dr. Michael Patrick Harrington, Ph.D., District 4 Nomination
Bobby Avery – District 5 Nomination
Stuart Hannsman – District 6 Nomination
NBU Board of Trustees Nominations:
Dr. Cade Smith
“The NBU Board of Trustees is looking forward to working with NBU leadership and the Rate Advisory Committee members over the next few months,” said NBU Board of Trustees President Judith Hoffmann. “This is a process of transparency and will ensure we hear recommendations of our community’s rate-paying customers. Customer feedback to the NBU’s Board of Trustees is a very important step in the process of setting the next three-year rate plan while safeguarding the sustainability of essential services for generations to come.”
To learn more about NBU’s Rate Advisory Committee, visit nbutexas.com/rate-advisory-committee.
About New Braunfels Utilities:
Dedicated to excellence in service, New Braunfels Utilities (NBU) was established in 1942 and is one of 2,000 community-owned, nonprofit public power electric utilities in the nation. The mission of NBU is to enhance the quality of our community by providing innovative, essential services. Governed by a Board of Trustees comprised of local residents appointed by the New Braunfels City Council, NBU is committed to being a recognized and trusted community partner, providing essential electric, water, and wastewater services. Utility revenue is invested back into the utility systems, which benefits the community. New Braunfels Utilities makes an annual transfer to the City of New Braunfels, which in turn helps to pay for services such as fire, police, and parks. Additionally, in 2016, NBU repurposed its former16-acre warehouse site to become the Headwaters at the Comal, to serve as its conservation legacy, which will strengthen the relationship between the community and nature by showcasing the significance of the Comal Springs. Follow NBU on Facebook at facebook.com/newbraunfelsutilities, on Twitter at @nbutexas, and learn more, visit nbutexas.com.