2020 Water District Commissioner Training & Management, Planning and Legal Updates for Water Utiliti


2020 Water District Commissioner Training & Management, Planning and Legal Updates for Water Utilities

Thursday, August 27, 2020
Live Zoom Webinar
8:50 a.m. – 3:55 p.m. (EDT)

 This session has received the following approvals: six hours of annual training for water district commissioners (note: this webinar does not satisfy any portion of the 12 hours of initial training for newly appointed commissioners), six hours of continuing education credit for drinking water operators, and continuing legal education by the Kentucky Bar Association. Registration is required by clicking the link below. Should there be a need for more than one person to view the webinar from the same device, please download a multiple viewer sheet from Kentucky Rural Water Association to verify all who view from the same log-in location/computer.

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.8:50 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. – Welcome and Opening Remarks

Recent Developments in Utility Regulation (Part I)
Damon Talley, Stoll Keenon Ogden, PLLC

This presentation reviews recent developments in public utility law and regulation. Topics include unaccounted water loss, revisions to the Open Meetings Act, sovereign immunity, wholesale water purchase agreements, franchises, and laws enacted by the 2019 and 2020 General Assembly. The presenter will also examine and discuss recent court and PSC decisions.

10:05 a.m. – 11:05 a.m.
Challenges Facing Water Districts
Greg Heitzman, BlueWater Kentucky

This presentation examines the major challenges currently confronting Kentucky’s water systems, including the financing and planning of major infrastructure replacement, compliance with announced and anticipated revisions to federal and state safe drinking water laws, increased operating costs, and overcoming public reluctance to rate adjustments to finance improvements. The presenter will offer 12 recommendations for meeting these challenges.

11:10 a.m. – 12:10 p.m.
All You Ever Wanted to Know About Depreciation . . . and Then Some
Katelyn Brown, Stoll Keenon Ogden, PLLC

This presentation discusses the importance of “fully funding depreciation” and examines how many municipal and PSC-regulated water systems are employing this key business practice. The presenter will also address the consequences of failing to fund depreciation and detail how water utilities can increase their depreciation funding.

12:10 p.m. – 12:40 p.m.  Break

12:40 p.m. – 1:40 p.m.
Water Utility Tariffs: Practical Considerations
Gerald Wuetcher, Stoll Keenon Ogden, PLLC

A water utility’s tariff offers a unique opportunity for the water utility to structure its relationship with its customers. This presentation will highlight various provisions that a water utility should have as part of its tariff to protect against financial and legal liability as well as avoid common customer disputes. In the first portion of the presentation, discussion will include the statutory and regulatory framework for utility tariffs and the process by which a tariff may be revised. The presentation will conclude with some practical suggestions for improving a water utility’s tariff.

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.
Extending Meter Service Life
Mary Ellen Wimberly, Stoll Keenon Ogden, PLLC

Studies show water meters remain largely accurate for 15 years, but PSC regulations require 5/8-inch x ¾-inch meters be tested or removed every 10 years. This presentation will discuss whether sample testing is the functional equivalent of testing each meter, the ANSI Standard method of sample testing the PSC has approved for gas and electric meters, and the PSC’s recent decisions on water utility efforts to extend meter service life to 15 years and beyond.

 2:50 p.m. – 3:50 p.m.
Recent Developments in Utility Regulation (Part I1)
Damon Talley and Gerald Wuetcher, Stoll Keenon Ogden, LLC

Continuation of Session 1.

3:50 p.m. – 3:55 p.m. – Closing Remarks