LMPD :: Louisville Metro Police Department

Metro Council members offer plan to reduce LG&E fee for new police officers


Louisville Metro Council members are expected Thursday to offer a plan for LG&E natural gas customers to pay a smaller increase in their bills for expanded police services, as proposed in Mayor Fischer's 2014-15 city budget.

The measure would propose a fee ranging from a minimum of 1.5 percent to a maximum of 2 percent, reducing the total LG&E franchise fee by $1.8 million. Fischer promoted his plan at 3 percent with an average natural gas customer in Louisville Metro, except for those in incorporated small cities, paying an additional $20 per year. The council plan would reduce added costs to $12 per year on average.

The council plan also proposes transferring $1.8 million from a capital account to an operating account to make up the difference, according to a council news release.

The $3 million is expected to be dedicated to the hiring of 96 new police officers, payment of police overtime, the creation of a real-time, fully-staffed crime center, the added costs associated with the city's home incarceration program and the prosecution of crimes.

Those in favor of the LG&E franchise fee reduction and amending the budget include President Jim King, budget committee vice chair Kelly Downard, Mary Woolridge, David Tandy, David James, Tina Ward-Pugh, Rick Blackwell, Vicki Welch, Cindi Fowler, Dan Johnson, Madonna Flood and David Yates.

The proposed reduction is expected to be offered as an amendment during Thursday's meeting. The amendment is also expected to provide a requirement that the city of Louisville offer the franchise to LG&E through a bidding process and that the Mayor execute a temporary franchise agreement with LG&E for up to one year while the City and LG&E negotiate a long-term franchise agreement.