Saturday, December 30, 2006

Grant County PUD Gears Up for the Coming of Microsoft and Yahoo Server Farms

Grant County Public Utility District, in central Washington, has adopted a $469.8M budget for 2007, a 14% increase over 2006. As reported by David Cole of the Columbia Basin Herald, the budget addresses the increase in demand due to the coming of Microsoft and Yahoo to this rural county, as well as the expenses involved with the FERC relicensing of its Priest Rapids Dam.

"• The district has to respond to increasing growth and customer demand, including expansion of the electric system for businesses locating to Grant County like Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo!, [PUD spokeswoman]Bjork said.

• The PUD anticipates receiving its new operating license in 2007 for the Priest Rapids Hydroelectric Project from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The PUD expects to meet additional undetermined FERC requirements accompanying the license. The budget reflects projected costs to meet those requirements, Bjork said."

Grant Co. PUD owns and operates two dams on the Columbia River, Priest Rapids and Wanapum. Wanapum is currently undergoing a major turbine upgrade.