Thursday, April 30, 2020

Clinton & Entergy Trade Licks

Clinton and Entergy traded more licks in their fight over street lamps.  The city accused the public utility of ripping off the city by charging monthly fees for street lamps that were built more than 50 years ago and exceeded any reasonable depreciation schedule.  Entergy fired back and said it followed the law and any changes could result in rate increases for Clinton customers.  Clinton gave it right back to Goliath as it escalated the public relations war. 

Clinton Mayor Phil Fisher levied several charges at Entergy last week:

· Paying monthly fees for lighting poles that are decades old and far exceed any known depreciation schedule;

· Paying monthly fees for obsolete mercury vapor lights that should have long since been replaced by more energy efficient fixtures, and;

· Paying monthly fees for underground supply lines installed as far back as 1946...

 One particular example involves 331 concrete poles installed in 1979 as best as the City can determine, for which the City is still paying a monthly fee. By the City's calculations the cost of these poles at the time of installation would have been approximately $104,642 yet the City has paid to date approximately $1,100,000 and is still paying every month. If installed at today's prices, the cost of the poles would be approximately $397,000.

Entergy responded:

Entergy Mississippi has been charging the correct lighting rates that are authorized by state law. Under the Public Service Commission’s oversight of Entergy Mississippi’s rates and revenue collections, Entergy would not benefit from artificially inflating its lighting rates.

The Company provides street lighting facilities as a service to municipalities, and the intent of this service is to allow the municipalities to provide street lighting to its citizens at a lower cost than the municipality could provide on its own, which saves taxpayers money. The lighting service includes installation, maintenance and replacement of lighting facilities, and purchase and storing of inventory, among other services.

In 2015, our municipal street lighting rates were lowered significantly due to rate design changes requested by Entergy Mississippi and approved by the Public Service Commission.

We believe we have been a good corporate citizen and partner to the City of Clinton, through the payment of more than $2 million in franchise fees alone over the past five years, donations to local community causes and help with economic development. We have been working with the City of Clinton to address its concerns, and we’re disappointed the City chose to file this complaint rather than to work with us on a potential resolution.

If the City’s complaint recommendations are adopted, it will actually raise rates for all of our customers.

From 2008 to 2018, our rates have stayed well below the state and U.S. averages. Currently, our average residential rates are about 24% below the U.S. average.

Clinton took Entergy's shot and returned a few of its own, point by point.




19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Entergy quickly announces their best defense, "the Public Service Commission let us do it, so it can't be unfair."

Anonymous said...

So... Entergy's argument is either 1) we lobbied and got a loophole in the law that allowed us to steal taxpayer money or 2) We know Mississippians elect folks too stupid and/or trusting to find out what we are doing long enough to make a *%*#load of money.

Entergy shouldn't ask for a jury trial. And, voters should be asking our Public Service Commission how they missed this.

Anonymous said...

This is on Brent Bailey, public service commissioner

Anonymous said...

Brent Bailey has been a public service commissioner less than 6 months. I wouldn't say this is on him. Any rate issues were probably approved under previous regimes.

Anonymous said...

This is on Brent Bailey, public service commissioner

Laughable comment. Disregard troll @ 10:22 AM.

Anonymous said...

Utility companies are not non-profit organizations. They don't provide services for giggles and grins. And if you were a stockholder in Entergy and you say you would vote against charging what the PSC would allow, well, you're either a liar or just plain stupid. And what difference does it make how old something is if it continues to provide the intended service? The poles and lights are not on a lease/purchase plan. Fisher is way off base on this one. Election time must be near.

P/S. Contrary to the opinion you have formed by now, I am not an Entergy stockholder and could care less what they do in Clinton.

Anonymous said...

...I though this post was about something else

Anonymous said...

Clinton Mayor Phil Fisher is shucking the corn!

Anon-E-Mouse said...

Nothing’s new under the sun…. Just as MS power company hooked south MIssissippi for the Kemper County power plant boondoggle, Entergy is going to hook their ratepayers for their solar energy plant like they did to us for Grand Gulf.

Lock a few Presidents and VPs in jail to stop this type of activity.

Anonymous said...

Don't you just love it.

If you do this everybody's rates will go UP!

Does not matter what "THIS" is, its always the answer. Same thing different "THIS" in my home state.

Anonymous said...

@11:03 So you think it is fair for a regulated, non-competitive, profit guaranteed corporation to charge a city 10 times the cost for a chunk of concrete? From what I see, they aren't complaining about paying for electricity... which is what Entergy is supposed to be in the business of providing.

I say "Go Clinton" it's refreshing to see someone stand up for what is fair and reasonable when it comes to our tax dollars. And... everyone should care what they doing in Clinton, because trust me they doing the same thing to your city.

Puns R Us said...

There is a lot of electricity in the air, and sparks are flying, but this could just be a power play.

//bada bing//

Anonymous said...

I think Phil is spot on. I like his response to Entergy comments. What corporation says - hey we donate some money to good causes, you should overlook the fact that you paid us due to our overcharging you for street lights.
This practice has sucked in a lot of cities. Will be good to put Goliath back in his place on this one.

It’s not like Entergy can lose money. If Clinton wins, All this does is cut out overpaying for lighting by city/county government.
The setup of this monopoly doesn’t allow them to lose money. Seems to be a lot of Entergy employees commenting on this one.
Go get’em Phil!

Anonymous said...

The salaries of their "leadership" are outrageous. Think Silicon Valley CEO level. And then remind yourself this is a public utility company with regional monopolies.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who don't think the big cheeses at the lectric company don't have to work hard earn their money tryin to explain electric and electric bills and why people in Mississippi have to pay for what they can't see or smell. But somehow the lectric is magically there in the wires and they can use it use purt near every day to stay cool and keep the beer cold.

Anonymous said...

The ECM's just sent about $10,000.00 of it's "member-owners" money to pay for a new veterans park bench in Ridgeland. You can do this when your a fat big shot living in Reunion.

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a Natchez 'Garden Club' crisis.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it funny how Entergy acts just like a bully kid when called out.
Deflect:"It wasn't my fault, the PSC said I could take extra cookies"
Justify:"Well I've been really good and shared the ones you made me share, so I deserve an extra cookie or two"
Threaten:"If you get my extra cookies taken away, it'll be your fault when I take someone else's cookie"

Anonymous said...

If 10x costs, or 1,000% profit margins, are being allowed for a regulated business, that doesn't sound like they are really all that regulated.

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If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

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