System Impact Fee

What is a System Impact Fee?

Based on the feedback we received during the Strategic Plan, that customers want to encourage economic development while keeping rate impacts low, Chelan PUD has implemented a system impact fee to new connections, which will help offset the cost of new infrastructure.

The system impact fee is designed to share the cost of new infrastructure, like substations, by assuming that 20% of the substation will be used for system reliability, and the remaining 80% will support new load added to the system. That means Chelan PUD will be responsible for 20% of the cost of a new substation, which is funded through wholesale surplus power sales. The other 80% will be recovered via the system impact fee assessed on new connections to the system, and existing retail rates (this is not a rate increase).

We believe the system impact fee will provide the best value, for the most customers, for the longest time by supporting growth in Chelan County while minimizing impacts to existing customers. 

Learn More

To learn more about how we made the decision to implement a system impact fee, visit our Online Open House from fall 2021, read the Funding Growth FAQ, or watch the overview video below.

System Reliability Benefit

Ideally, a substation’s capacity is capped at 80%. We leave the remaining 20% available so that power can be rerouted from other substations to keep the lights on during an outage or maintenance. Having that capacity available is a benefit to system reliability for all our customers.


Considering the county’s growth assumptions and the PUD’s average cost of constructing new substations and related infrastructure, staff arrived at a marginal cost to assess new customers when they connect to the system. The system impact fee has the potential to generate about $1 million annually, based on historic growth rates. 

New customers will pay the system impact fee as part of the residential or commercial connection process.



Please contact or call 509-661-8400.

Aerial photo of Lake Chelan