Opinion: Ignored consequences of Initiatives include bigger EID rate hikes
A major financial consequence ignored by the “no growth” initiative proponents is that substantial EID infrastructure capacity was expanded many years prematurely creating more than $100 million of current EID infrastructure excess capacity that is not needed to serve current ratepayers. More than $7 million of annual debt costs (interest and principal repayment) on that infrastructure excess capacity is being financed by current ratepayers.
Our bimonthly EID bills would be another 10 percent higher if they were not getting help from $30,000 of water and sewer hookup fees per new home that is built. EID’s financial plans assume that some 167 homes will be built annually which means that EID currently plans that $5 million of its annual costs will be paid by someone other than us ratepayers.
Since EID needs to recover all its costs in revenues, if the initiatives pass then we EID ratepayers will have to pay higher rates to make up for those $5 million of foregone hookup fee revenues. It certainly would be to the financial benefit of EID ratepayers to use up some of EID’s $100 million of excess capacity and avoid even more increases to our water and sewer rates and bills.