Brownsville city commission votes to begin rolling back electric rates

1 year 5 months 3 weeks ago Tuesday, October 18 2022 Oct 18, 2022 October 18, 2022 7:21 PM October 18, 2022 in News - Local

In the latest development in the fallout following a forensic audit involving the Brownsville Public Utilities Board, city commissioners voted Tuesday to change the utility rates for PUB customers.

Rates were rolled back by 22%, and it will be approved at an upcoming city commission meeting.

It’s a welcome move, but it’s being viewed as too late for many.

The audit alleged Brownsville PUB overcharged customers for a project that never got off the ground.

During the public comment portion of the city commissioners meeting, Brownsville resident Agripina Gomez said she and other people like her are hurting.

RELATED: Brownsville Public Utilities Board places CEO on paid administrative leave following forensic audit report

“This morning as I was working from home with my baby, I saw the pub truck pull up in my driveway,” Gomez said. “They wanted to shut off my light.”

“This is what's going on in the community, people are getting cut off,” Gomez said. “Ii didn't receive a call, I didn't receive anything. They just went up and straight to cut off my light.”

Others called for accountability on the city commission.

“If you've known about this issue, you need to get the hell out of public office,” resident Mary Helen Flores said. “Take your consequences, and talk to law enforcement to clear your conscience.”

Commissioners also discussed how to bring more oversight and take action in similar situations.

Brownsville city attorney Victor A. Flores said the city charter does not give commissioners the authority to remove Brownsville PUB officers or employees.

A proposed change to the city charter would have to be on the ballot in 2023. Commissioners will discuss the issue at their upcoming meeting set for Tuesday, November 1. 

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