PRCUA approves new budget

Published 7:00 am Saturday, September 24, 2016

Members of the Pearl River County Utility Authority Board of Trustees approved next fiscal year’s budget.
The total budget next year will be about $4.7 million, of which about $4 million will come from the sale of water and sewer services. That’s a decrease of $72,300 from the previous year’s budget. Executive Director Ray Scott said the decrease is due to an expected decrease in expenses.
Scott expects to see a deficit of $631,200 between revenue and expenses, but that is a decrease from last year’s deficit of $1.1 million. Scott told the Board that part of the next year’s deficit will be due to depreciation.
During the next fiscal year Scott budgeted the Utility Authority to receive $3.7 million in sewer revenue, $211,000 in water revenue and $120,200 in total fees and other revenue.
The Board approved a motion to adopt the budget as presented.
In other business, the Board heard from Jim Harvey with the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality. He addressed the Board about his observations of the Utility Authority’s infrastructure, saying the new construction and rehabilitation work that has been done so far has them ahead of the game as it pertains to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Capacity Management Operations and Maintenance Program.
“There is a benefit not just for the cost side but from the regulation side as well,” Harvey said.
He said the CMOM is a document that can help utility providers meet the specifications expected to be implemented soon.
After commending the PRCUA for their efforts, he gave an example of a less than ideal visit he had in another small town recently. During that inspection, a backup generator caught fire when he asked the staff member to start it. During the inspection, he learned that the generator had been leaking diesel fuel for some time and had caught fire on a previous occasion.
The Board also heard about an unexpected expense incurred due to a lightning strike. Scott said security features at the water well on Highway 43 N were damaged by the strike, costing the Utility Authority $10,000 in necessary repairs.
The next Board meeting will be Oct. 20 at 2 p.m. at the treatment facility on Neal Road in Picayune.

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