PUD reviews Clean Energy Implementation Plan
December 9, 2021
Wahkiakum County PUD held two public hearings on Tuesday morning to start their meeting, first to hear public comment regarding their first Clean Energy Implementation Plan and second for public comment on redistricting.
“The Clean Energy Transformation Act was signed into law on May 7, 2019, by the governor. It transitions Washington to 100 percent renewable or non emitting electricity by 2045 and expands energy assistance for low income customers,” General Manager Dan Kay said.
Beginning in 2022, the PUD and other utilities around the state must develop and submit a clean energy implementation plan every four years to identify the specific actions they will take to meet the state’s goal of being greenhouse gas neutral by January 1, 2030.
Some of Wahkiakum PUD’s plans include conducting targeted outreach to expand participation of low income seniors and disabled customers in a discount program and an entry assistance program. They will consider new conservation programs to increase the efficiency of customer’s homes in an effort to reduce the energy burden, and will evaluate the use of electric fleet vehicles.
The plan developed by the PUD is available for viewing on the their website, https://www.wahkiakumpud.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/Clean-Energy-Transformation-Act-–-Clean-Energy-Implementation-Plan-DRAFT-1.pdf
Counsel Tim Hanigan addressed redistricting, saying that the staff’s recommendation was to continue with the three districts as they are. According to Hanigan, the population of District 1 dropped less than 1 percent, the population of District 2 had risen 1.07 percent, and the change to District 3 was less than 0.1 percent.
There was no public comment on either issue.
General Manager Kay said that new construction applications had slowed and shared that two students from the high school had expressed interest in an opportunity for a job shadow at the PUD, which he supported. He said they were shadowing the line crew on Tuesday.
Kay spoke briefly about funding opportunities and said that he planned to formally request direction from the commission as far as “potential funding and if possible to prepare a scope of work for the Westend water project…”
“I think it would be smart to be prepared when any of these fundings come down,” Commissioner Dennis Reid said.
Commissioner Gene Healy suggested that Kay survey the community to gauge interest in the potential project. After some discussion, the commissioners seemed to agree that Kay was welcome to research the issue.
Auditor Erin Wilson said during her report that the PUD was in the process of redesigning their website.
The commissioners handled action items, including approving the write off of old accounts, an annual practice. They also approved a $5,858,455 budget for 2022, which includes a transfer of $532,760 from fund reserves. Capital outlay totals $804,250 which includes $80,000 for pole testing, $50,000 for pipe replacement in the Western Wahkiakum Water System, another $50,000 for pipe replacement in the Puget Island Water System, and more.
The budget can be viewed on the PUD website, https://www.wahkiakumpud.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/Wahkiakum-PUD-2022-Final-Budget.pdf