A survey of Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce members shows 75 percent oppose increasing the franchise fees for Cheyenne Light, Fuel and Power customers, according to chamber President and C-E-O Dale Steenbergen.

The proposed franchise fee increase from 3 percent to 4.5 percent over the 25 year life of the franchise agreement was voted down by the city council Finance Committee on Monday, but the full council will have the final word on the issue. Steenbergen says 20 percent of chamber members responding to the survey supported the idea, while 5 percent didn't take either side.

City staffers told the Finance Committee Monday they wrote the increase into the proposal to cover the cost of infrastructure word needed to support utility operations as well as expected wage increases for city employees performing the work over the life of the agreement. Steenbergen told the committee that lower rates rates are one of the advantages Cheyenne has in attracting new businesses, and said raising the franchise fees would lessen  that advantage