Abilene City Council to talk proposed AEP rate increase, sidewalk project, Meals on Wheels grant

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ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – There are several big ticket items this week for Abilene’s City Council including denying a proposed rate increase from AEP, and some grant opportunities.  

AEP is looking to generate $54.6 million in additional revenue by increasing their cost recovery rate. 

“By about $2.60 cents per bill, on the average bill, and we are denying the request, which will trigger a rate case hearing, which is all par for the course,” said City Manager Robert Hanna.  

Hanna says denying their first request is standard practice, in hopes that after mediation they will come back with a more viable number. 

The city is applying for a match grant with TxDOT to provide sidewalks in two needed locations, including South 14th Street from Pioneer Drive to Barrow, which would include a 5-foot sidewalk and pedestrian bridges as well. Abilene would make a $312,000 local contribution to receive a $1.25-million state grant contribution. 

The other location is Old Anson Road. 

“Anyone who drives down Old Anson Road notices there, if you’re heading northbound on the left-hand side you’ve got, really, a dirt path people have carved in.” Hanna says. “It’s really important that we put a sidewalk there,” said Hanna.  

Old Anson Road would be a $159,000 local contribution and $640,000 state grant contribution. 

“It is a grant application, we’re not guaranteed to get those funds, but hopefully we’ll be very competitive in that process,” said Hanna. 

Meals on Wheels is also hoping to land a Community Development Block Grant for kitchen upgrades. 

“It’s additional kitchen equipment or new kitchen equipment, make HVAC improvements, ice machine improvements and exhaust fan improvements,” said Hanna. 

The grant is for $81,000. 

City council’s next meeting is May 13 at 8:30 a.m.

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