What is a PUD?
What is a PUD?
- A Public Utility District is a community-owned, locally regulated utility created by a vote of the people under RCW 54.
What are PUDs authorized to provide?
- PUDs in Washington are authorized to provide electricity, water and sewer services, and wholesale telecommunications. A PUD may provide one or more of these services, depending on the needs of the community.
How many PUDs are there in Washington state?
- There are currently 28 PUDs. Of those, 23 provide electricity, 19 provide water or wastewater services, and 13 provide local access to broadband telecommunications services.
How many customers do PUDs serve?
- Public utility districts that are members of the Washington PUD Association serve approximately one-million residential, business and industrial customers in 26 counties across Washington State. PUDs serve more than half the state geographically.
How are PUDs regulated?
- PUDs are governed by a nonpartisan, locally elected board of commissioners. Commissioners are responsible for setting rates and for overseeing the operation of the PUDs. They meet in open session where members of the public can observe and participate in the decision-making process.
How long do PUD commissioners serve?
- PUD commissioners are elected to serve six-year terms. The three member Board includes at large positions that serve six year terms. Commissioner salaries are set by state law, based on the size of the utility.
Where do PUDs get their electricity?
- Most PUDs purchase electricity wholesale from the Bonneville Power Administration, a federal agency that markets power generated by 34 hydroelectric dams in the Columbia River Basin. Several PUDs own and operate their own hydroelectric dams, including Chelan, Grant, Pend Oreille and Cowlitz PUDs. Many PUDs are also members of Energy Northwest.
About Energy Northwest
- Energy Northwest develops, owns and operates a diverse mix of electricity generating resources, including hydro, solar and wind projects – and the Northwest’s only nuclear power facility. These projects provide enough reliable, affordable and environmentally responsible energy to power more than a million homes each year, and that carbon-free electricity is provided at the cost of generation.
- As a Washington state, joint action agency, Energy Northwest comprises 27 public power member utilities from across the state serving more than 1.5 million ratepayers. The agency continually explores new generation projects to meet its members’ needs. For more information, visit the Energy Northwest website.