Shadi Eskaf presented in two sessons of the Montana League of Cities and Towns’ 86th Annual Conference. Both sessions were held Thursday, September 28, 2017. More general details of the conference can be found here.
Rates and the Importance of Reserves for your Water System
Time: Thursday September 28, 1:30pm-2:30pm MT.
Description: Rates should be the primary source of revenue for local government water systems, not taxes. And rates should reflect the full cost of providing water service, which includes operating costs, capital costs, and reserves (which can be used for future capital expenses, or to cover unexpected revenue shortfalls, or to repair the system in times of emergency). Shadi Eskaf from UNC stressed the importance of having rate setting objectives and talked about different elements of rate structures (the base charge, volumetric charge, customer classes, billing frequency, etc.) that go into meeting those objectives. The goal is to have sufficient revenues to cover the cost of service.
Capital Planning for Water Systems and the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund
Time: Thursday September 28, 4:45pm-5:30pm MT.
Description: All local governments with drinking water or wastewater systems must plan for the eventual expensive rehabilitation and replacement of the assets. This presentation by Shadi Eskaf started with basic steps in capital planning and budgeting. To fund the capital projects, local governments should consider taking advantage of state and federal subsidized loan and grant programs. This presentation also reviewed these programs in Montana, with a specific review of the requirements for eligibility for the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund.