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Chattanooga, TN (September 1, 2015) – EPB has made this year's in lieu of tax payments totaling $19,175,457 to the City of Chattanooga, Hamilton County, and 15 other local governments. This year's payments represent an increase of 49% since construction of the community’s fiber optic smart grid began in 2008.
Unlike other parts of city government, EPB receives no local tax money. EPB is the largest single payer of taxes or in lieu of taxes to both the City of Chattanooga and Hamilton County. These payments are based in part on the value of EPB property and assets which includes the Smart Grid equipment and the fiber optic network.
“The ability to significantly increase our payment in lieu of tax contributions to the communities we serve further demonstrates the value of EPB’s fiber optic network, which has reduced power outage minutes by 60% while delivering next-generation communications that improve quality of life and help grow the local economy,” said EPB president and CEO Harold DePriest.
During the last ten years EPB has made a total of $140,531,789 of in lieu of tax payments to Chattanooga, Collegedale, East Ridge, Red Bank, Ridgeside, Signal Mountain, Lookout Mountain, Graysville, Lakesite, Soddy-Daisy, Walden, Hamilton County, Bledsoe County, Bradley County, Marion County, Rhea County and Sequatchie County.
In most of the communities that EPB serves, payments in lieu of tax have more than doubled since the deployment of the fiber optic smart grid.
Established as an independent board of the City of Chattanooga in 1935, EPB is a municipally-owned utility that provides electric power and fiber optic communications services as a means of promoting economic development and enhancing quality of life across the local area.
EPB serves nearly 180,000 homes and businesses in a 600 square-mile area that includes greater Chattanooga, as well as parts of surrounding counties and areas of North Georgia.
In 2010, EPB became the first provider in the United States to deliver up to 1 Gig (1,000 mbps) internet speeds utilizing a community-wide fiber optic network that provides access to every home and business in its service area. In 2015, EPB became the first (and to date) only American ISP to make up to 10 Gig (10,000 mbps) internet speeds accessible to all of its residential and commercial customers as a standard offer.
EPB has also utilized its community-wide fiber optic network to deploy the most advanced and highly automated smart grid power management system in the nation. In recognition of EPB’s groundbreaking infrastructure, the Department of Energy and Oak Ridge National Laboratory are utilizing EPB’s smart grid as a national model for researching and developing best practices. EPB is also the first major power distribution utility to earn the USGBC’s PEER certification for having a highly automated, modernized electric power grid.