The Department of Public Utilities presented its budget to Orangeburg City Council on Aug. 8, projecting an income of about $94.8 million and expenses of almost $79.7 million next year.
The utility will transfer $5.4 million from its net profit to the city’s general fund budget.
Council gave first-reading approval to projects including street light upgrades on U.S. 301, an upgrade to the electric substation on Goff Avenue, extension of natural gas lines to Elloree and an advanced water meter system.
Electric Division Director Wade Holmes said all of the projects are “part of our overall system improvement plan.”
Holmes said DPU is taking assessments and rebuilding, replacing or upgrading aging infrastructure.
He said the electric division expects to spend about $1 million to place a line extension from its 115 kV transmission line to Substation 10 on U.S. 601 in front of Koyo.
Currently, the lines can carry only up to 46 kilovolts.
The work will coincide with the rebuilding of its substation on U.S. 601.
The entire project will cost about $6.7 million and will be completed by March 2018.
The division also plans an $800,000 upgrade to the Goff Avenue substation. The project was put on hold because of Hurricane Matthew but will restart in February 2018.
The upgrade will eliminate underground equipment prone to failure.
Holmes said the substation will add a significant level of distribution reliability to Claflin University, S.C. State University, Goff Avenue, Chestnut Street and surrounding areas.
The utility will spend $1.7 million in an upgrade to its Rowesville Road substation generator.
Holmes said the project saves $3.5 million over the first 10 years of service.
The project is expected to be completed by February 2018.
DPU also plans to spend a $100,000 on the first phase of a street lighting upgrade on U.S. 301.