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Volunteer Candidates Sought for Utility Customer Review Panel

City looking for residents to guide the development of a strategic plan

The Seattle City Council and Mayor are looking for nine volunteers to serve on a Customer Review Panel that will provide feedback and guidance during the new Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) Strategic Planning Process.

This year, Seattle Public Utilities will be developing a comprehensive Strategic Business Plan, similar to the one created by Seattle City Light to guide its investments, service levels and rate path over the next six years.

The primary goal of the Strategic Business Plan is to provide direction for all of SPU’s business lines (water, drainage, wastewater and solid waste services) that reflects customer values, provides rate predictability and results in the best value for customer dollars.

“Seattle residents rely on SPU for a wide array of services. And we are always working to deliver those services as efficiently and effectively as possible,” said Mayor Mike McGinn. “I will look to this panel to help us deliver the best possible services for our customers.”

“Customers’ feedback on rates and services will be at the forefront of the strategic planning effort.  I encourage Seattleites to apply,” said Councilmember Jean Godden Chair of the Libraries, Utilities and Center Committee.

The Customer Review Panel will guide development of the strategic plan, allowing residents and rate payers to provide leadership and guidance on priorities, direction and the future goals of SPU.

The Panel will meet bi-monthly between March 2013 and December 2014.  The Panel will not continue to meet after the strategic plan is complete.

Specific Panel Duties include the following:

  1. Gaining a working knowledge of SPU services, financial policies, costs and rates;
  2. Reviewing the plan’s assumptions, technical evaluations, policy directions, and action alternatives;
  3. Working closely with staff to understand the issues and challenges;
  4. Providing advice to the Mayor and Council on the Strategic Business Plan concurrent with delivery of the final proposed plan to Council;
  5. Assisting the Mayor and Council in engaging customers in discussions of the merits and implications of the Strategic Business Plan.

Requirements:  Service on the Committee will require a significant investment of time to learn about Seattle Public Utilities four lines of business (water, drainage, wastewater, and solid waste services) and in depth bi-monthly meetings between March 2013 and December 2014. Candidates should have an interest in learning about SPU’s services and a commitment to the customers of SPU, including considering rates, fees, and utility services from the customer perspective.

Interested candidates should send a brief paragraph of interest (no more than 300 words) to Diane Clausen to by 5 p.m. on Jan. 31, 2013.  Of the nine positions five are Mayoral appointments and four are appointed by the Council.