Fort Irwin Privatizes Utility Distribution System
April 20, 2004
U.S. Army National Training Center enters into privatization agreement with Southern California Edison.
On March 31, 2003, Fort Irwin Military Base in California entered into a 50-year contract with Southern California Edison Company (SCE) to privatize their electric distribution system. Completion of this procurement action was in response to a Department of Defense initiative to review the possibility of privatizing all utility systems at military installations in the United States in order to reduce cost and better utilize military resources for mission functions.
Fort Irwin is the U.S. Army's desert warfare training center. It is roughly the size of the state of Rhode Island. The Fort is one of the largest SCE customers, with 5,000 military personnel and their families living at the Fort and another 3,000 people in the civilian workforce. Virtually every soldier deployed to Iraq went through training at the Fort, and the facility is expanding to include both industrial and urban warfare training.
With the credit to be received by Fort Irwin as a result of the sale to SCE, the installation will be able to offset the cost of SCE�s Annual Added Facility Charge and more importantly fund over a dozen sorely needed projects (worth more than $3.5 million) on the system. These improvements will bring Fort Irwin's electrical system to a more reliable and cost efficient state and result in fewer outages.
On August 1, 2003, SCE took full responsibility for ownership, operation, maintenance and repair of the electrical system. The sale of the electrical system will allow for vast improvements, including replacing poles and redoing the military substations and meter switch cabinets. These upgrades will save Fort Irwin about $178,000 the first year and $545,000 each subsequent year for the remainder of the 50-year contract.