Utility Billing 101’the facts behind the numbers

Following is part one in a series designed to help educate citizens on how their utility bills are figured. This first effort will identify different portions of the most recent bill at the Brady Standard-Herald. Questions, comments, concerns and feedback are encouraged in order to help the general public better understand what issues are prevalent in the local community. As mayor of the City of Brady, I am very concerned with the public’s perception of how our municipality is operated. Public relations is vital to improving the image of the city government. If you have questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to email or call me. I am most readily available at the newspaper office, and email correspondence is a viable and easy form of communication as well. Call me at 597-2959 or email me at jstew@centex.net. ‘JS Utility Billing 101 In an effort to modernize and simplify its electricity charge to the customer, the Brady City Council formally adopted a billing format recently that has several changes. The Distribution Charge is now solely reflective of the city’s cost to distribute electricity to the consumer. This charge includes a meter fee and the rate required to pay for personnel, capital improvements and the daily operational needs to maintain the city’s distribution lines. Previously, the city rate had a portion of the purchase cost of electricity in it, but the distribution charge, established by ordinance through formal action by the city council, is a constant rate from month to month. The purchase cost of electricity is now completely separated from the city’s distribution rate and is now reflected on the second line of the bill. The Power Charge represents the actual cost of the electricity paid to the city’s wholesale provider (LCRA). This rate will vary from month-to-month just like the fuel charge with the gas bill which is representative of what the city pays its wholesale gas provider.

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