STANLEY, Dec. 13 — During all three town council meetings across the county this week, each governing body discussed a Nov. 22 notice from Shenandoah Valley Electric projecting a proposed rate increase.
“On January 2, 2024, Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative (SVEC) will be applying to the State Corporation Commission (SCC) for a streamlined increase in its electricity delivery rates,” reads a Nov. 22 letter from SVEC. The “streamlined rate relief” is allowed by the Virginia Administrative Code (20 VAC 5-200-21), according to the electric provider, who “will request a total base rate revenue increase of approximately 3.87 percent.”
“The average residential member who uses 1000 kWh per month will see an increase in their total monthly bill of about $6.24, or approximately 4.5 [percent],” states the Nov. 22 letter.
The new rates will not go into affect until SVEC receives a ruling and gains approval from the SCC.
Xfinity/Comcast also sent a notice to localities that their rates would be increasing on Dec. 20, 2023 for certain customer services, such as the Broadcast TV Fee and the Regional Sports Network Fee.
Local agencies have also received various notices of rate increases from accounting firms to gravel haulers, technical services, suppliers and most contracted services and materials it takes to run local government.
In other business at its Dec. 13 meeting, the Stanley Council took the following actions:
• Heard a report on remaining ARPA funds noting that $1.65 million had been spent; $85,431.18 remains unspent; and $80,000 of those funds have been allocated. That leaves just $5,431.18 undesignated in the last allotment of federal funds through the ARPA program. Town Manager Terry Pettit told the council he will have a full report accounting for all ARPA funds at its January meeting.
• Unanimously approved a bid of $100 received for an army trailer owned by the Town. Council also unanimously agreed to take bids on a 2007 Chevrolet truck with 210,000 miles. After checking prices to replace the motor, council members decided to sell the vehicle.
• Heard a report that the concession stand air conditioning project at Ed Good Memorial park will be completed on Thursday, Dec. 14. An effort to install additional lighting along the walking trail at the park may get underway in the coming months.
• Heard a report from Police Chief Ryan Dean noting 467 calls for service during the month of November, with 284 calls being self-initiated, and the issuance of one citation. Council unanimously agreed to allow police officers to buy their issued sidearms at a rate of $300 each, while firearms sold to non-officers would go at a rate of $350.
• Unanimously agreed to spend $4,700 for Woody’s Construction to complete work on the pool building at Hawksbill Park.
• Unanimously agreed to renew an annual one-year advertising contract with Page Valley News for $2,080.
• Discussed ways to cut down on after hours activities at the Little League park, which will now be locked in the evenings (gate locked). Council members said “No Trespassing” signage has been ineffective.
• Heard a reminder of the Merry Grinchmas Movie Night at Hawksbill Park’s upstairs hall from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 15, including a showing of “The Grinch”, cookies and milk, hot cocoa, and a special guest appearance.
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