EPB During Snowstorm Had Highest Peak In Its History; Storm Was Costly To Utility

Friday, March 21, 2014

The recent snowstorm brought the highest peak power use in EPB's history, Finance Director Greg Eaves told EPB board members Friday.

The extremely high usage brought EPB the higher kilowatt usage it has been wanting to help balance its budget, but he said the usage was so high that TVA charged EPB and other affected utilities a demand charge.

Also, it cost EPB $4 million to get everyone's power back on. There were 182 crews and nearly 800 contractors involved for several days in clearing lines and getting them back online.

Mr. Eaves said the cleanup could have been much more costly except for EPB's Smart Grid. He said it automatically switched power back on for 40,000 customers.

David Wade, EPB executive, noted that the power line problems, unlike in most storms, were not in the mountainous areas. He said that was because, due to a slight temperature variation, the weight of the snow was heavier in the valley - causing limbs to break. 

EPB at this point in the fiscal year is $7.4 million below budget. Operations are $3.4 million over budget - manly attributable to the storm cleanup.

Mr. Eaves said the utility should begin to get back on track over the next several months.

He said the utility has had to deal with four of the six worst storms in area history in just the past three years.

Harold DePriest, president, noted that, "Five of the top six have been on my watch."

The fiberoptic side continues to be a much brighter story.

The video, phone and Internet service has made $9.8 million for EPB thus far this fiscal year.

Mr. DePriest said EPB needed to get 43,000 customers to make the TV operation profitable. He said it recently signed up the 56,000th customer. He said he projects it will get at least 75,000 - maybe within a year.

EPB just signed 560 units at Alexian on Signal Mountain.

The utility now has 3,900 customers on its gig service.   


Chattanooga Business Calendar Sept. 21-27

Tuesday, Sept. 23 Women and Franchising  8:30-10 a.m. TN Small Business Development Center: 100 Cherokee Blvd. Many organizations and programs recognize the value of women in the franchise industry and there are many programs and incentives available to help women succeed. We will discuss this more during this session along with the following topics:  Why ... (click for more)

Investiture Ceremony For Chief Justice Lee Held Today

Dignitaries from across the state gathered in Knoxville  Wednesday  to mark the formal investiture of Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Sharon G. Lee. Gov. Bill Haslam administered the oath of office to Chief Justice Lee, who was surrounded by her family in the Courtroom of the Tennessee Supreme Court within the Historic Post Office in downtown Knoxville. ... (click for more)

EPB Says "Close To A Wash" On City Street Light Billing

EPB President Harold DePriest denied Wednesday that EPB owes the city over $1 million on street light billing. He stated,  “EPB has never said that we owe the city $1.2 million. When all the facts are taken into account, the financial difference is close to a wash.” Mr. DePriest said, "I regret that this complicated issue has been oversimplified in some reports. As we’ve ... (click for more)

New Red Bank Zoning Ordinance Is Ready For Review

The new Red Bank zoning ordinance is ready for review, City Manager Randall Smith said Tuesday night. It can be seen on www.redbanktn.gov and the link to zoning regulations. The new ordinance will replace one that was created 30 years ago.    The plan will encompass both residential and commercial development and is intended to direct ... (click for more)

Why So Much For A Rail Study?

From the things that make you go hmm department. Ok, so the feds are giving us $400k and the city is kicking in another $300k for a total of $700k to do a study on having in town rail service. Why so much for a study? Don't get me wrong, I'm totally down with Chattanooga having some passenger trains running around. I get that. It's awesome. We've needed it for a long time. I ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: I’m Certainly No Expert

Sometime on Monday night, after I had written a piece on getting swatted with a switch as a kid, I got an email from ESPN Canada asking if I would be a televised guest on “Off the Record,” the most watched daily sports show in Canada. The subject: corporal punishment in America. Are you kidding me? I am hardly an expert. All weekend my world of sports and its excitement was warped ... (click for more)