Chelan PUD’s five-year priorities focus on reliability, customer service

by Rachel Hansen | Oct 03, 2022

Customer service, reliability and innovation were highlights of the updated five-year business plan, presented today at the Chelan PUD commissioners meeting. (Starting at 00:20:00 on the board audio recording).

The plan lays the foundation for Chelan PUD’s priorities and budget planning through 2027. Four strategic goals guide the five-year business plan. Here’s a summary of the initiatives:

Invest in assets and people. Investing in assets continues to be a major theme, led by the modernization of several generating units at Rocky Reach and Rock Island dams. The work includes an innovative pilot project to replace oil-lubricated turbine parts with materials that are compatible with water and air. The environmentally friendly design would be the first of its kind on the Columbia River.

The PUD is planning for advanced metering, and several investments in its distribution system to reduce outages and improve reliability. Those improvements include animal guards, tree-trimming and underground cable replacement.

Chelan PUD will continue to roll out new tools for customer-owners over the next five years, including real-time outage information, mobile bill pay and text notifications.

Maintain strong and resilient financials. A strong energy market, especially for renewable sources such as hydropower, has bolstered Chelan PUD’s financial outlook with better-than-forecasted revenues. That puts the PUD on a path to invest in capital projects without taking on new debt until 2025, based on current forecasts.

Enhance quality of life in Chelan County. The five-year plan maintains $6 million in investments annually for public power benefit projects, including the expansion of the utility’s fiber internet network, and collaboration with community nonprofits.

Support economic development. The PUD is planning to build more substations and expand the electrical grid to provide more flexibility and capacity to serve residential growth, and potentially large commercial and industrial loads.

Commissioners will hear the proposed 2023 annual budget overview on Oct. 17, followed by two public budget hearings in November.

In other business, commissioners:

• Recognized two honorees of the Governor’s Safety award.

• Celebrated the opening of six pickleball courts at Walla Walla Point Park Sept. 30. Wenatchee Valley Pickleball Club is planning a ribbon cutting ceremony at 4 p.m. Oct. 12.


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Media contacts

Rachel Hansen: (509) 661-4320
Neil Neroutsos: (509) 661-8291

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Visit our Safety and Outage Center for information, or to report an outage, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, call 1-877-PUD-8123.


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