Brian Bond, Vice-President of External Affairs with AEP SWEPCO, presented a Franchise Agreement to the Red River Parish Police Jury at their first meeting of 2018. The agreement, which will not be exclusive to SWEPCO, will allow Southwestern Electric Power Company to provide and maintain services throughout the parish.
The franchise agreement, which will be for a period of fifty years, is designed to consolidate previous agreements with SWEPCO and Valley Electric, who have merged. Bond stated, “SWEPCO had a franchise agreement with Red River Parish. It was a twenty-five year agreement that expires in June. Valley Electric also had one with Red River, it was ninety-nine years. It expires in 2036. We need to consolidate them into a new agreement.”
“Edgefield, Coushatta and Martin are the three incorporated entities that we provide service to, along with rural customers within the parish, and, of course, we have mining operations.” Bond added that “we’ve got more tree trim dollars than we’ve ever had in the state of Louisiana, eighteen million dollars a year, that we are spending throughout the parishes that we serve. That [trees] is your number one cause of outages.”
Bond, who has been with the company for 36 years, went on to say, “It is a privilege to provide safe, affordable and reliable power to our customers, and we do so in a large area of northwest Louisiana now, particularly with our Valley merger.”
The Police Jury will begin the process necessary for consideration of the agreement.