The Long Range Planning Committee (LRPC) is currently focused on supporting our staff in managing the progress of MC Engineering as they work toward completion of the USDA Water System Improvement Project Design Phase. The design drawings and specifications are nearing 90% completion and scheduled for 100% completion by mid‐April. The challenge continues to be reaching a final design that will result in construction bids within our USDA approved funding, while identifying and minimizing known risks. By mid‐April, we are scheduled to start the construction bidding and award phase, with the contract award in June. Prior to the bidding, we are also on schedule to complete several required USDA Letter of Conditions (LOC) documents.

As mentioned in past Bubbler’s, we were directed by the USDA to use interim financing to cover all project costs to‐date and through the construction period. We are currently working the final approvals with our selected lender, and will have that loan in place prior to the start of construction. At the end of construction (estimated by year‐end 2019), the USDA loan will begin and all costs, up to the approved amount of the loan, will be eligible for reimbursement to the interim lender and potentially BLSMWC (for any project efforts we may have covered).

Based on the above described efforts, and the cash inflows/outflows, required reserves and other potential liens, the LRPC continues to prepare a multi‐year cash flow analysis through 2021. The draft analysis is scheduled to be completed by month‐end March. Our first USDA loan payment will be due in 2020, at which time this expense will be factored into our rate structure. We continue to collect meter usage data from 662 radio read meters currently installed, which will also be utilized and factored into our future year rate structure analysis.

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