Shenandoah City Council discusses energy, tax rate

The Shenandoah City Council met with Entergy representatives Aug. 28 to discuss power outage solutions.

The Shenandoah City Council met with Entergy representatives Aug. 28 to discuss power outage solutions.

The Shenandoah City Council met with Entergy representatives Aug. 28 to discuss ongoing power outages in the area.

The council heard a presentation from Stuart Barrett, Entergy vice president of customer service, and engineering supervisor Troy DeBeaumont, which detailed the results of a recent inspection of services in the northern part of the city.

"First, I would like to apologize to the residents of Shenandoah for the lack of reliable service we have incurred this year," Barrett said. "These outages are from a range of issues. Some of them are controllable, and some are not. We realize and we know any kind of power outage, regardless of the cause, is frustrating and inconvenient."

DeBeaumont said the inspection included a thorough walk down of the area, where crews examined every piece of equipment along the power lines. Following the walk down, Entergy will be replacing 3,400 feet of poles, wiring and transformers from Holly Hill Drive to Wellman Road.

DeBeaumont also said the company plans to reconfigure the electrical feed works in the area, which will involve balancing the number of customers on each line. Construction crews will be in customer yards and planned outages will occur during the replacements.

The repairs will affect customers north of Shenandoah Drive and west of Holly Hill Drive.

A walk down of the southern Shenandoah Valley is currently underway, and results are anticipated within the next few weeks.

Council Member Ted Fletcher expressed frustration for area residents, who Fletcher said have lost up to $150,000 worth of appliances due to the outages.

"I'm disappointed that after speaking with a few [residents], you guys have failed to paid any claims," Fletcher said. "How can we provide any restitution to the problem you have failed to provide a solution to prior to this point? The city is planning at this point to step up and do some things ... City government has no business providing funding for your solutions. It should have come a lot sooner."

City Council has budgeted $160,000 to help fix the issue around Wellman Road.

In other business, council discussed adopting a tax rate of $0.1799 per $100 of valuation, which is lower than the effective tax rate of $0.1828. By adopting this lower rate, the city will receive $14,548 less in revenue from existing properties compared to last year while not raising property taxes for residents.

The proposed tax rate is equivalent to the 2018-2019 tax rate. The tax rate will not be adopted until after a public hearing Sept. 11.
By Andrew Christman
Andrew joined Community Impact Newspaper in early 2019 after moving from Indiana. He is a 2015 graduate from Indiana State University, where he received degrees in English and journalism. He has written for a number of small town publications throughout his career as a reporter.


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