EPB Says "Massive" Audit On Streetlight Charges To Take Longer Than Expected

Thursday, June 26, 2014

EPB officials said Thursday that a "massive" audit involving charges to the city for the streetlight program is taking more time than expected.

Vicky Gregg, EPB board member who heads the audit committee, said auditor Warren McEwen said it could not be ready by July 1 as requested by Mayor Andy Berke. He set a new date of July 21.

Harold DePriest, EPB president, said he remains convinced that there was no "over-billing" of the city.

But he said EPB wants to get to the exact figures to make sure. "We want to do what is right," he said.

Mr. DePriest said in some cases it is necessary to go back beyond 15 years for the computation involving whether there was a charge for the old mercury vapor lights or the later high-pressure sodium lights.

The issue arose after the city, under the Littlefield administration, entered into a contract with the local Global Green Lighting firm for a major program to swap out all the 26,000 lights in favor of new LED lights.

However, Mayor Berke reversed that policy and passed a budget that pays only to put in LED lights as older bulbs burn out.

Mr. DePriest said EPB replaces some 1,000 lights per year for the city.

It was explained that when lights are replaced before their useful life that it involves "stranded asset accounting." He said it is like buying a new car with a five-year note and then replacing it with another car after two years. He said, "You still owe payments on the first car."

Mr. DePriest said the high-pressure sodium lights used less energy than the mercury vapor lights, but cost three times as much. "Basically, it was a wash," he said.

Ms. Gregg said she wants the EPB auditors to work closely with City Auditor Stan Sewell in gathering the numbers. "We don't want dueling audits that will require a third one," she said.

 


Family Makes Treasure Trove Of Early Chattanooga Photographs Available For Book; Stokes Collection Has Been Passed Down To Descendants

A treasure trove of Chattanooga photographs that have been passed down in the Stokes family for generations has now been assembled in an upcoming book. Chattanooga Around The Turn Of The Century: The Remarkable Stokes Collection will be published by Chattanoogan.com. Pre-orders are now being taken for the book, which includes over 700 photos on large-size pages. Publisher ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report - And Mug Shots

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: BALLARD, ANTHONY MONTREL     2401 S CHAMBERLAIN AVE.#2 CHATTANOOGA, 37404     27     Chattanooga          VIOLATION OF PROBATION (DOMESTIC ASSAULT) BEAN, BO     HOMELESS CHATTANOOGA,     42    ... (click for more)

How To Reform The City Industrial Development Board - And Response (3)

My aims is to bring to the public’s attention the need for procedural changes that, if implemented, would significantly improve the information available the public, to the City Council and to the City Industrial Development Board about the verifiable benefits and costs of tax incentive financing structures and to make the entire process transparent. The public, the City ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My October Garden

Hark! It is the first day of October and, as I make my monthly stroll through the garden, I find a growing numbers of leaves and acorns. Autumn leaves are beautiful while acorns are nuts, thus you will get the idea as we make our monthly awards: A PRETTY LEAF to Phil Hughes after the Minnesota Twins pitcher came within one inning of earning a $500,000 bonus this season. The deal ... (click for more)

Notre Dame Earns Senior-Night Soccer Victory

Honoring the team’s nine seniors was a focus of Tuesday night’s girls’ soccer match at Notre Dame, but it wasn’t the top priority for the Lady Irish. They knew that a win over visiting Signal Mountain would secure a first-place finish in District 7-AA, and their mission was to earn it. Notre Dame did just that, making Emma Higgins’ early goal stand for a ... (click for more)

UTC Men's Hoops: Brooks Savage, Alex Wharton Promoted

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.---The Chattanooga Mocs men’s basketball program is promoting two staffers, pending University approval, coach Will Wade announced Tuesday. Brooks Savage and Alex Wharton are moving into new roles in the wake of assistant coach Turner Battle leaving to take a similar position at UAB. Savage takes Battle’s place as a full-time assistant after ... (click for more)