Some Manchester residents and businesses are getting reimbursement checks. The City of Manchester is returning money to residents and businesses who paid gas or electric franchise fees in 2005, 2006 and 2007 because the franchise fees were deemed excessive. City Manager Tim Vick says the City enacted the franchise fee on gas and electric in 2005, implementing it at four-percent.
A lawsuit case in Des Moines led the City of Manchester to cease franchise fees.
According to a lawsuit filed against the City of Manchester by Patricia Briggs and Michael McMahon, the proceeds recovered totals more than 595-thousand dollars. After each payment of all costs, fees and expenses, each class member is entitled to receive 64-point-three percent of the total amount of franchise fees they paid during the three years. Franchise fees are being collected again in Manchester… The State Legislature adopted laws in 2009 that allows cities to collect franchise fees of up to five-percent.
The City of Manchester is currently using that money to fund an additional police officer, with the other portion paying for the electricity costs for streetlights (which averages about 75-thousand dollars a year). The remaining funds will be used for work related to public safety and public works.