BVU reports financial gains, lower expenses [Bristol Herald Courier, Va.]
(Bristol Herald Courier (VA) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Feb. 03--BRISTOL, Va. -- Bristol Virginia Utilities Authority reported modest financial gains and lower expenses during the first six months of fiscal 2012-13.
The report came during the authority board's monthly meeting, where they also received copies of BVU's fiscal 2011-12 audit report.
"Our total operating revenues for this fiscal year -- the six months that ended in December -- are 1.84 percent better than last fiscal year. Last fiscal year, the revenues were $40.5 million and we ended this six months with $41.3 million revenue," CFO Stacey Pomrenke told the board.
"What's nice is that our operating expenses have decreased. To make the same $41 million this year we did it with $33.5 million in costs compared to $33.65 million last year. That's a very good indicator of the expenses that we're cutting to generate layered services."
Total net income rose during the first six months of fiscal 2012-13 compared to last fiscal year -- $2.66 million compared to $2.17 million, despite the authority ending its management role with MI Connection, a North Carolina telecommunications venture.
"At this time last year we were pretty involved in MI Connection operations contract. The last six months of the last fiscal year we brought in $581,000 from MI Connection. We only brought in $182,000 this fiscal year. So even with that downturn we still increased our revenues," Pomrenke said. "What we were able to do, after we weaned ourself from MI Connection, we were able to increase revenues from our core business."
Cost-cutting measures drew praise from board member Jim Clifton.
"I think that column where we decreased expenses 0.26 percent, I think that is a huge, huge thing. We're gaining in revenue but cutting expenses," Clifton said. "I think one of the board's utmost responsibilities is to deliver premium quality services for the least amount of money."
BVU also has received additional revenues from the Washington County Service Authority, which it plans to invest in new smart meters for its water system. Buying now, before an expected price increase, is expected to save about $500,000, BVU CEO Wes Rosenbalm said.
In other business, the annual audit report contained a clean, unqualified opinion with no deficiencies and no negative findings. It was prepared by the accounting firm Brown, Edwards and Co.
The report shows BVU received total operating revenues of $81.08 million during the period from July 2011 through June 2012. The electric division accounted for about two-thirds of that total with $54 million in total revenues including $52.4 million from electric services.
The OptiNet telecommunications division generated $19.8 million in revenue, or about 24 percent of the total, including $17.2 million from delivering cable TV, Internet and phone services.
Water and wastewater divisions generated a combined $7.2 million.
At the same time, BVU reported $76 million in total operating expenses and a net operating income of more than $5 million. The electric division generated a $2.5 million profit, while OptiNet generated nearly $2 million in profit. The water division accounted for almost $560,000 net income while the wastewater division reported a $25,000 net loss.
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