Utility Authority hears proposed budget

Published 7:00 am Friday, August 18, 2017

The Pearl River County Utility Authority Board of Directors was presented with a proposed budget during Thursday’s meeting.
Total revenue for the next fiscal year is expected to include $219,000 in water, $3.7 million in sewer and $164,800 in fees and other revenue, totaling about $4.1 million.
Expenses for that year are expected to be $663,3000 in wages and benefits, $456,300 in electricity, $712,200 in repairs and maintenance and $166,900 in chemicals, testing and disposal. Those expenses are proposed to total nearly $2 million.
Executive Director Ray Scott also budgeted $2.8 million in total overhead, most of which would include $2 million in depreciation expense.
Scott anticipates the total budget for that year to be $4.8 million. The Board is expected to approve a final budget at next month’s meeting.
Before hearing about the budget, the Board heard about a new application crews and engineers are using on the field called CarryMap. Now that all of the lines in the county’s two municipalizes have been located, the app allows crews to utilize GPS to tell them which line they are closest to.
In regard to the work to relocate utility lines in anticipation of the Mississippi Department of Transportation widening Highway 11, Dungan Engineering representative Vernon Moore said the deadline has been pushed back until March of next year. He said that most of the design phase has been completed on the Utility Authority’s end, save for one or two areas.
Board President Dr. Sonny Sones said he expects a number of businesses to be affected by the project, especially once it’s complete.
A proposed project that would install sewer services to residents within the Eagle Heights subdivision was budgeted, and nearly 100 percent of the residents have expressed interest in connecting to the system, Scott said.
Some residents have already paid the $250 deposit. However, Moore said he is having trouble contacting some of the residents.
In other business, a replacement for Sones was announced at the meeting. The Pearl River County Board of Supervisors accepted Sones’ resignation earlier this month. He will remain on the Board until September, Scott said.
His replacement will be Tabitha Butler, who has a degree in environmental science and currently works at Stennis Space Center.
She was appointed by the Board of Supervisors after expressing interest in the responsibility, Scott said.
The next meeting will be Sept. 21 at 2:30 p.m. at the treatment facility on Neal Street in Picayune.

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