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Help ratepayers first

JIM WILSON • Jun 6, 2014 at 9:02 AM

I read recently in the Johnson City Press about the $500,000 donation from the Johnson City Power Board to East Tennessee State University’s performing arts center. I am a senior citizen on a fixed income and I feel outraged that the Power Board has that much excess money to be able to give a half-a-million to anyone.For me to afford my electric bill, I have to keep my air conditioner turned off until the summer heat is unbearable and in the winter, I only keep the house warm enough so the pipes don’t freeze. If the Power Board has that much excess money, then it should first give ratepayers a break.I also read that the attorney for the Power Board said it would only cost $7 per customer to fund this gift. That might sound like nothing to a rich attorney, but to senior citizens on fixed incomes, that’s quite a bit.I’m not familiar with the Tennessee Valley Authority guidelines cited by a recent letter writer in Forum, but if such guidelines exist and are not being followed by the Power Board, then some sort of accountability should be taken.JIM WILSONJohnson City