City News with Brian Newton and Bob Flittie

FREMONT – There are unusual holes in some wooden utility poles in Fremont. Is that a problem? Bob Flittie explored that with City Administrator, Brian Newton, on Monday.

The problem? Water and other elements get inside and cause the utility poles to deteriorate or rot out over time and need to be replaced. How does that happen? Newton explained that woodpeckers are the culprits:

Then the moisture gets inside:

And how does the City find out where the bad poles are? By organizing The Pole Patrol:

Newton also talked about the rate increases coming for natural gas customers in Fremont. Increases are caused by Northern Natural Gas hitting customers, like the City of Fremont, with a big increase in the charges to use their gas lines. Fremont and other communities are fighting it, but that battle may take some time. So most natural gas customers in residential Fremont are likely to see an increase of $15 to $20 a month. Newton explains:

As background information, Newton says Northern Natural initially wanted a 300% increase; it’s more like 200% jump now:

Those on the Budget Plan wouldn’t see an increase until the re-adjustment comes in the spring:


You can listen to the full interview on our Podcast page.