MLGW Asserts Its Power Again

Looks like we’re in for another rate hike at MLGW.

The City Council heard from the head of it, J.T. Young, at yesterday’s Clowncil meeting. He is asking for a rate hike on electricity, gas and water.
The Daily Memphian reports:

MLGW president and CEO J.T. Young is proposing an 8.5 percent to 9 percent total rate hike over the five years, including the 2 percent electric and gas rate hikes the council approved in February. The council approved the 2 percent hikes to take effect in July after the utility first proposed larger multi-year rate hikes that the council rejected.

The proposed rate increase would mean an average on residential bills of $5.46 more a month for gas, $1.78 more for electricity and $2.52 more for water.

Young, who became head of the utility after the hikes were approved in February, said he requested the higher rates because of the same utility infrastructure needs cited by now retired MLGW president Jerry Collins.

Somebody’s got to pay to remove the old meters and pay for the new smart ones even though the old analog ones outlast them by 20-30 years.

And somebody’s got to pay for the filter water pitchers that were dumped on our doorsteps this summer. They must be their response to any lawsuit over lead pipes. After all, if we got one, we were warned, right? Only problem is to use one is time consuming and you would have to do it frequently because it doesn’t provide enough water to fulfill drinking and cooking needs for more than one person.

Then there is the cost of tearing up our roads to replace sewer pipes. I’ve heard Memphians complain that the MLGW workers get there, do little and are gone by 3 o’clock. If you’ve watched the progress of them on Peabody, you’d observe that it takes at least six months to do a small area.

The MLGW tacticians have manipulated the numbers to put our higher costs at about $10 a month. Do you believe that? I don’t.

They don’t seem to be much concerned with the quality of our electrical lines and wires. What do you want to bet that the next time a strong wind comes by or an ice storm, Memphians will still be out of power for days?

The Council lets them get by with the hikes, the inefficient work and poor service.
Somehow I doubt more money will cure any of these.

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