Basalt to collect new energy fee
Aspen, CO Colorado
BASALT ” Basalt will collect a new fee from Holy Cross Energy that could fund projects ranging from the undergrounding of power lines to conserving energy.
The town government and Holy Cross are negotiating a new franchise agreement that will increase the amount of the annual fee that Holy Cross pays to provide the town with power.
Under the terms of the new deal, Holy Cross will continue to pay a franchise fee of 3 percent of its quarterly revenues collected from the sale of electricity within Basalt. That fee raised $82,360 in 2006 and all the funds went into the town’s general fund. It raised an estimated $88,000 last year.
The new agreement will add a 1 percent community enhancement fee. Those funds must be earmarked for special uses and cannot disappear into the town’s general fund.
The enhacement fund is limited to town beautification projects, energy conservation projects, equipment and technology upgrades for schools, scholarships, acquisition of parks and open space, sponsorship of community events and undergrounding of power lines.
If the enhancement fee had been in place in 2007, it would have raised about $29,333. That amount will, in theory, increase each year as Basalt grows and consumes more electricity.
The agreement with Holy Cross will be in place for 10 years, with an option for 10 additional years. The Basalt Town Council approved a first reading by a 6-0 vote Tuesday. A second reading is required.
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