What Factors are Contributing to the Cost Increases?
Many items Rock Island relies on for building and maintaining the grid have seen drastic increases in the material costs, some as high as 200% during the 2021 year. In addition, the lack of reliable shipping has resulted in Rock Island being forced to obtain equipment from higher-priced alternatives outside of our regular bulk ordering pricing.
Additionally, labor resources have become a scarcity in San Juan County and strategies for retention are becoming critical to meet the operational need for the business.
How is the Rate Increase Decided?
During October and November, staff evaluated the observed trends and built a forecast modeling the next 5 years of business. It was clear that Rock Island could not stay on its projected course to meet business goals by maintaining its current rate structure due to the unordinary inflationary increases. The recommendations were presented and supported by the OPALCO Board. The business plan was adopted by a vote at the November OPALCO Board Meeting.
Rate Increase Determination?
Historically, Rock Island has not modeled any rate increases, even though inflation to some extent is expected every year. We rely on a growing subscriber base to keep up with this expense increase and have successfully met that challenge since 2015. The COVID-19 pandemic was an unforeseeable and impossible to predict an event that is still producing effects on our economy and health. While it is inevitable that future rate increases will occur from time to time, Rock Island will demonstrate fiduciary responsibility when it comes to managing our business on your behalf.
What Assistance Is Available?
Rock Island is excited to be able to offer substantial discounts for individuals that qualify for assistance through the following programs:
- EAP https://www.opalco.com/about-your-account/energy-assistance-program/energy-assist-faq/ (Just show Rock Island your approved EAP from OPALCO and we will add the discount to your service.)