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Austin Energy Rates, Economic Incentives Up for Discussion at Council Work Session

Photo by Jeff Heimsath for KUT News

The Austin City Council will discuss proposed rate hikes for Austin Energy in a work session today.

It’s the last work session before the council is scheduled to take possible action on the proposal.

Last week, council membersagreed on a plan that would break the increases into five tiers – charging a higher rate for more electricity used.

This Thursday, the council will consider the ordinance and hold a public hearing on the rate increase.

That’s not the only item up for discussion at the council’s work session today. Council may discuss any of the following items slated to appear at its regular Thursday meeting:  

  • Changes to secondhand shops' regulations: An item sponsored by Mayor Pro Tem Sheryl Cole overhauls local rules governing secondhand stores – including resellers of jewelry, power tools, automotive parts and more – covering the hold period a store must abide by before selling an item.
  • Tweaks to economic incentives committee: The council recently established a special subcommittee  to consider revisions to the city policy in economic incentive agreements. The original sponsors – council members Mike Martinez , Laura Morrison and Kathie Tovo – are offering an item amending their original resolution, including which council members will sit on the committee.
  • Even more Austin Energy action: Concurrent with AE’s rate redesign talks have been broader conversations about the governance of the utility. An item from council member Bill Spelman calls on the city manager and the Electric Utility Commission “to study and evaluate governance models for publicly-owned electric utilities,” and present their findings by the end of October.

An earlier version of the story identified changes to secondhand shop regulation as changes to pawnshop regulation. It has since been corrected.

Wells has been a part of KUT News since 2012, when he was hired as the station's first online reporter. He's currently the social media host and producer for Texas Standard, KUT's flagship news program. In between those gigs, he served as online editor for KUT, covering news in Austin, Central Texas and beyond.
Laura first joined the KUT team in April 2012. She now works for the statewide program Texas Standard as a reporter and producer. Laura came to KUT from the world of television news. She has worn many different hats as an anchor, reporter and producer at TV stations in Austin, Amarillo and Toledo, OH. Laura is a proud graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia, a triathlete and enjoys travel, film and a good beer. She enjoys spending time with her husband and pets.
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