City Council Expected to Approve Energy Center Purchase

8 years 10 months 2 weeks ago Monday, May 16 2011 May 16, 2011 Monday, May 16, 2011 1:20:00 PM CDT May 16, 2011 in News
By: Will Petersen
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COLUMBIA - Mayor Bob McDavid said Monday he expects the Columbia City Council to approve the appropriation for the city to purchase the Columbia Energy Center from Ameren Energy Marketing.

Voters approved the purchase in April, but the council needs to finalize that $45.2 million be transferred from the Columbia revenue bond to the building and structures account.

The council marked this issue as an emergency on its agenda, but McDavid said that was because of a city error and wasn't addressed at an earlier council meeting.

"Basically it's the city's fault for not getting it on the agenda at the last meeting. If it's an emergency, it's a self imposed emergency," McDavid said.

Columbia will assume control of the energy center on June 1 and the purchase must be made by then. McDavid said the only way that is possible is to approve the purchase Monday night.

McDavid said people in Columbia will not see any difference in utilities prices based on the change of ownership, but says extrenal factors could change that in the future.

"That's not to say that utility rates wont go up in the future. As coal prices go up, as transmission prices go up, the city is just like every other energy provider if those costs go up they'll of course have to be passed on," McDavid said.  

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