Supervisors to discuss long-term solutions for utility system finances

by Quinton Sheppard - Posted on Mar 09, 2011 - 03:55 PM

The Gloucester County Board of Supervisors will host a work session with the county’s Utilities Advisory Committee at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the colonial courthouse.

Supervisors voted unanimously in June 2010 to move $500,000 from the county’s general fund to the ailing utility fund. Marty Schlesinger, Gloucester’s director of public utilities, was asked at that meeting to sit down with the county’s Utilities Advisory Committee to study the financial situation of the system and come up with a long-term solution.

Nickie Champion, Gloucester’s director of financial services, first reported that the county’s utility fund was in trouble in May. At the time, she said without the half-million dollar transfer, the fund could have lost its bond rating.

One of the major challenges in having the utilities system sustain itself financially is its size, Schlesinger said at the June meeting. "We do not have a large enough customer base at this point to support the revenue we need," he said.

Another challenge is the increasing amount of work related to state consent orders on the system.