Wednesday, January 13, 2010

"Dore clarifies position on LUS rate hike"

That title might better be: "Dore commits to LUS rate hike."

According to the Independent blog Sam Dore is now a committed supporter of the LUS rate hike and will both vote for it himself and work for its passage. Dore explains it as less a shift in position than a matter of timing but that commitment changes the odds on the measure's passage.

In a LPUA meeting late last year Dore was sided with Ken Boudreaux and Brandon Shelvin to make a 3-2 majority in favor of voting down a rate hike. The five-person LPUA board must approve any changes concerning the city's utility assets and that loss made a vote by the larger council pointless. Dore, and in particular Boudreaux, cited timing, a lack of information and the feeling that the administration had put forward and a take-it or leave-it position that didn't brook compromise or negotiation.

Among the non-LPUA members of the council, the so-called rural districts, it rumor has it that Purvis Morrison who is planning a run for mayor of Scott is now in support of the increase. That decision could only have been reinforced by the power outage in Scott during Monday's frigid night that was attributed to an overtaxed connection by Entergy and when that same connection went out again Tuesday night LUS' Huval pointed to outages as just the sort of problem that he wanted to avoid by doing the timely capacity upgrades the rate increase would fund.

That brings the pro-rate increase count up to 4...with 3 of those votes being mostly out of the city and thus having few LUS customers to contend with— and the few that they do have are in the more prosperous southern reaches. It seems likely that this time around the administration and LUS have done a better job of vote counting.

Time will tell.

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