The SAWS Board of Trustees appointed the Chamber’s Vice President of Public Policy Stephanie Reyes to the Rate Advisory Committee (RAC) this week. The RAC is a special purpose advisory group that provides input to the Board of Trustees and SAWS staff on the cost of service and rate design study. RAC objectives include assisting SAWS staff in establishment and prioritization of pricing objectives, reviewing and analyzing results of the cost of service study performed by their rate consultant, and providing input regarding potential changes to the existing rate and fee structure.
Earlier this summer, SAWS requested nominations from each City Council member, neighborhood associations, chambers of commerce, and business associations. SAWS was committed to appointing individuals that represent all facets of the SAWS customer base (e.g. Residential, Inside/Outside City Limits, Multi-family, Commercial, Recycle, Affordability). Stephanie was the only Chamber of Commerce representative appointed to serve on the RAC. Her work at the Chamber overseeing the Water Committee and Public Policy Council, as well as her prior experience as Assistant City Manager in Brownsville — a city that also has a municipally owned water utility — make her the ideal candidate to serve on the RAC.
The RAC is comprised of 20 members and is being chaired by Frances Gonzalez, San Antonio Area Program Officer for Asset Funders Network. RAC members include:
Council District RAC Nominee Customer Representation
1 Alex Birnel Residential/Affordability
2 Velma Willoughby-Kemp Residential
3 Steven Wurgler Residential
4 Genevieve Trinidad Residential/Multi-family
5 Daniel Meza Residential
6 Ramiro Cabrera Residential
7 James Smyle Residential/Affordability
8 Patricia Wallace Residential
9 Joseph Yakubik Residential
10 Raine Tanner Residential
RAC Nominee Nominating Group Customer Representation
Tamara Benavides SA Hotel & Lodging Assn Commercial–Hotel & Lodging
Mike Chapline SAWS staff Residential–Outside City Limits
Andy Diaz PACE Neighborhood Assn Residential
Victoria Keeler SA Apartment Assn Commercial –Multi-family
Patrick Garcia SA Manufacturers Assn Commercial/Industrial
Stephen Lara City of Balcones Heights Wholesale/Suburban City
Stephanie Reyes SA Chamber of Commerce Commercial
Steve Richmond SA Restaurant Assn Commercial–Restaurants
Vance Weynand SAWS Staff Recycled Water
The RAC will have approximately 10 meetings from September 2019 through May 2020. However, additional meetings will be added, if needed. The first meeting is set for September 24 where the RAC will approve committee bylaws, review purpose and mission, and receive an introduction to SAWS and Rates 101. A Rain to Drain Tour is also tentatively scheduled for October 26.
We understand the important role the RAC will play in determining the cost of service for our members and the residents of San Antonio. Count on your Chamber to keep you updated on the RAC’s progress. For more information regarding the SAWS Rate Advisory Committee, contact Stephanie Reyes, VP of Public Policy at email@example.com.