Utility fee increase approved in Lyon | NevadaAppeal.com

Utility fee increase approved in Lyon

Karen Woodmansee
Appeal Staff Writer

Public utilities doing business in Lyon County will see their fees increase by a half-percent each year over the next six years in order to help fund a new jail.

Lyon County commissioners voted 5-0 to approve an ordinance increasing the public utility license fees at a public hearing Thursday. One supervisor said the cost will ultimately be borne by customers.

“This will be passed on to consumers in their electric bills and their phone bills,” said Commissioner Phyllis Hunewill. “It’s surprising that no one is here protesting.”

The fee increase will affect telecommunications companies, electric energy providers, natural gas providers and commercial mobile radio services. The fees will increase a half percent each year from the existing gross revenue percentages determined for each utility. The half-percent increase will stop once the utility’s fee is at 5 percent.

Controller Josh Foli said this will add $1.2 million to county coffers.

Telecommunications companies now pay 3 percent of their gross revenue in fees, electric energy providers, natural gas providers and commercial mobile radio services pay 2 percent of their gross revenue.

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“They will all end up paying 5 percent in six years,” Foli said.

The fees will increase county revenue by $210,000 each year for the first four years, he said. Increases will be $180,000 per year for the next two years.

“After six years, we will be collecting a flat amount that will equal $1.2 million more than we’re collecting today,” he said.

The fee increase will take effect July 1, 2007.

County Manager Donna Kristaponis said revenue from the tax would be used to help fund a new jail.

The fees will only affect utilities doing business in the unincorporated areas of Lyon County; it will not affect Fernley or Yerington.

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at kwoodmansee@nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111 ext. 351.

By the numbers

Current license fee rates for utilities doing business in Lyon County.

• Telecommunications companies: 3 percent; 5 percent by 2011

• Electric energy providers: 2 percent; 5 percent by 2012

• Natural gas providers: 2 percent; 5 percent by 2012

• Commercial mobile radio services 2 percent; 5 percent by 2012