This is the second contract the city has awarded Schneider in light of its energy issues—the first is to complete an assessment of the city’s electric resource management.
In March, Schneider was hired to offer the city recommendations on how to best move forward following a $6.84 million deficit in the city budget’s electric fund for fiscal year 2017-18.
In May, Schneider recommended the city hire a third-party energy-management partner that would help respond to changing energy market conditions, develop a comprehensive risk-management policy that will set boundaries to risk tolerances and guide the city in decision making at all levels of the electric utility, and look into to hiring a new general manager of electric separate from water management.
District 3 Council Member Mike Triggs, though absent, raised concerns in a email that was read aloud during the meeting about hiring a company that was responsible for recommending the city hire for this need.
Community members also raised concerns during the public comment portion of the agenda item.
City Manager David Morgan said Schneider's recommendations came after the city had already agreed it needed to acquire a risk and resource manager and had moved forward in accepting bids. Morgan said Schneider's recommendations only confirmed the city's plans.
The contract will be for one year with potential extensions if the council is satisfied with the company's work, Morgan said. The partnership will cost the city $180,000 for the first year of service and $165,000 each following year, he said.
The contract passed 5-0, with Triggs absent and the District 1 seat vacant. Schneider beat out three other companies that bid for position.
District 6 Council Member Rachael Jonrowe said she was in favor of the contract.
"Schneider Engineering has worked for us in the past, and I don't see a compelling issue to not go forward," Jonrowe said.