Mount Pleasant Waterworks

South Carolina

Strategic Business Planning

Mount Pleasant Waterworks had developed a strategic plan several years previous to this project and incorporated it into its annual business planning process. Given changes in the economic environment, limited resources available to manage the business, an aging senior leadership and management team, and other issues, management determined that this plan should be updated to reflect the current situation. In addition, management became aware of the EUM framework and strongly believed that developing its strategic plan in accordance with EUM principles would help assure that all salient issues were considered and that the plan would be developed using industry best practices.

The objective of the engagement was to update MPW’s strategic business plan to drive future operations, resource allocations, and overall utility performance. The scope of work included the following major tasks:

MPW is working to achieve better performance through:

Rate and Financial Consulting

RFC assisted the Mount Pleasant Waterworks (MPW) in developing a new Microsoft Excel-based utility financial planning and rate model (Rate Model) to could be used by the MPW staff in its annual financial planning and utility rate setting process.  Additionally, RFC designed the new Rate Model to maximize its interface and exchange of information with the other information and financial systems used by the MPW.  The Rate Model was developed to provide cost of service based cost allocations and rate calculations and provide a direct link to the MPW’s new PIPES capital improvement planning software and Microsoft Forecaster budgeting software.  RFC also developed a utility impact fee model designed to incorporate forecasted capital improvements needs and other growth related financial and demographic data through a variety of build-out scenarios.  The impact fee model was developed to share capital and other information with the Rate Model to ensure consistent financial planning through utility rates and the growth related capital charges.

RFC has provided on-going assistance to MPW in updating the financial models and in gaining acceptance of an enhanced impact fee methodology through a series of work sessions with the Board of Commissioners.  As part of this on-going assistance, RFC performed an in-depth evaluation of, and recommended revisions to MPW’s Cost Recovery Policy document.  This rate-setting and policy document was designed to direct the utility’s user rate and financial procedures to maintain financial stability while ensuring the full and equitable recovery of all operating and capital costs from different customer classes.