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H7. Utility Infrastructure Finance and Ordinance Development

Program for Finance, Law, Civil Engineering, Urban Planning and other students

Port LaBelle Utility System (PLUS) currently serves approximately 1,500 customers with a potential maximum of approximately 11,000 customers. There are several major utility projects underway, e.g. a water transmission line and a distribution pipe network (rough estimate cost of constructing this water pipe network is above $7 million) within the served area. There is quite a long list of related unresolved issues - e.g. how much should be the served commercial, residential and governmental lot units charged for the water service?, how should these water rates develop with time?, are there options for grants in order to cover some of the water network construction costs?, will the approved budget cover the needed costs?, are all the legal ordinances followed?, is there a need to develop new or adjust existing ordinances?, etc.


Objective of this very challenging program assignment is to get you a hands-on experience in various issues related to utility infrastructure management, budget planning and ordinances development. While dealing with the specific PLUS issues, you will learn that any utility system around the globe faces very similar challenges and the typical procedures used here can be widely applied.

List of main tasks:

  • Research technical background of existing water utilities management procedures and systems;
  • Get familiar with related local, state and federal legislation for utilities management;
  • Research options for expansion of current utilities system within given time frame and budget options;
  • Attend technical coordination meetings with County engineers, planners and politicians;
  • Explore pathways for possible grants in order to cover some of the improved water network construction costs;
  • Suggest methods for more efficient management of the utilities budget;
  • Document whether there is a need to develop new or adjust existing ordinances related to the planned upgrade in the existing utilities system;
  • Based on your research among other utilities providers, coordinate new ordinances preparations for theirs adoption.

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