Minutes of the Regular Meeting NRPPD Board of Directors, October 23, 2014. Unapproved

The regular meeting of Directors of Northwest Rural Public Power District (NRPPD) was held in the Conference Room of the District October 23, 2014 at 1:00 PM.

The meeting was called to order by the president, Robert Rickenbach.  Directors who answered the roll call were Robert Rickenbach, Bruce Troester, Gary Fuchser, Lee Ahrens, Mike Van Buskirk, Jim Johnson, and Wayne Cobb.

Also present were Chance Briscoe, manager; Arlene Lahaye, office manager; Russ Reichenberg, line superintendent; Ron Housh, planning engineer; Les Tlustos, consumer services, and Terry Curtiss, District Counsel.

The Open Meeting Law posting was acknowledged. 

All votes are unanimous upon a roll call vote unless noted.

A motion was made by Wayne Cobb, duly seconded by Gary Fuchser to accept the order of business as published and supplemented at this meeting; motion carried.

A motion was made by Bruce Troester, duly seconded Jim Johnson, that the minutes of the meeting held September 25th be approved as published and mailed to all directors on October 17th; motion carried.

A presentation was given on the Nebraska Water Balance Alliance (NEWBA). They were formed in 2010 with a goal to promote sustainable water solutions that also safeguard Nebraska’s economy and quality of life. NEWBA has partnered with several businesses including PPD’s to facilitate broader understanding, encourage innovative solutions and foster constructive partnerships.

A discussion followed with a motion being made by Wayne Cobb, duly seconded by Gary Fuchser to support NEWBA in the amount of $2,500. Lee Ahrens, aye; Mike Van Buskirk, nay; Bruce Troester, aye; Jim Johnson, aye; Wayne Cobb, aye; Robert Rickenbach, aye; Gary Fuchser, aye; motion carried.

A discussion was held on the dates for the November and December Board Meetings. It was the consensus of the Board to hold the meetings on November 25th at 9 AM, and December 18th at 1 PM.

Arlene Lahaye reviewed the September income statement. Revenue for September was $276,851 under budget and our cost of power was also under what was budgeted by $67,078. Total net margins were $51,241. Chance Briscoe reviewed the Cash Flow from operating, investment and financing activities for the month of September. For the month of September there was a -$142,980 cash from all activities. A discussion followed with a motion being made by Gary Fuchser, duly seconded by Mike Van Buskirk to accept the September financial reports; motion carried.

Russ Reichenberg reviewed the NREA Mutual Aid Agreement. The agreement is between Public Power Districts, Electric Membership Associations, and Electric Cooperatives that provide electric service in the State of Nebraska. The systems agree to furnish Mutual Aid in cases of destruction of lines and equipment, occasionally and usually caused by the elements, on a scale that overtaxes individual system’s manpower, equipment and other facilities, resulting in major interruptions of electric service. The agreement also outlines the responsibilities of an assisting system and of the system receiving assistance, including billing and reimbursement of wages and other expenses. A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded by Gary Fuchser to accept the NREA Mutual Aid Agreement; motion carried.

Russ Reichenberg reviewed the September safety report.  Russ discussed the near miss incidents involving NRPPD personnel. The injury and training that occurred during the month was also reviewed. A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded by Wayne Cobb to accept the September safety report; motion carried.

In the Operation Report, Russ informed the Board that Danny Goeden has accepted a job in Southeast South Dakota, and his last day of work will by November 7th. Danny works out of the Crawford outpost.

Osmose will be doing pole inspections on lines North and East of Hay Springs

Russ discussed OSHA requirements that cover FR clothing, and the new fall arrest rule for climbing harnesses.

Ron Housh informed that Board that the AMI equipment at all Substations is on line and there are less than 80 meters left to install.

Arlene Lahaye informed that Board that we will be billing all meters using the AMI readings in October and that we intend to move the reading date 3 days in October, November  and December with the intention of getting to the last day of the month as our reading/billing date by the end of January 2015.  

Les Tlustos introduced the Tri-State character of “Power”. The character was developed to promote programs available at local rural electric utilities to help customers better manager the power use at their home, business, and on the farm/ranch.

Chance Briscoe reported that the last complaint on the installation of an AMI meter has been resolved and the meter has been installed.

Chance reported on the Tri-State Contract Committee he attended. Two main topics dominating the proceedings are the 5% self-generation limit and the buyout methodology. Consultants that were hired to assist with the contract discussions were introduced. 

Chance also reported on the Tri-State Rate Committee meeting. The Rate Committee reviewed the consultant’s work that has been completed, and the consultant gave the committee a progress report. The bulk of his work is centering on the capacity/demand and energy components of costs. He did acknowledge that there may be some merit of including and East/West component of cost allocation.

A discussion was held on rates. Chance stated that he has contacted CFC to conduct a Cost of Service Study for NRPPD, and would like have it completed by the spring of 2015.

Chance informed the Board that 26 PPD’s have joined the Nebraska State Chamber of Commerce.

Chance is going to have the NRPPD employees participate in a NRECA Employee Survey and NRPPD will participate again in 2 – 3 years.

A proposed American Customer Satisfaction Index survey was handed out to the Board. The Board was asked to review the survey and asked for suggestion for additional questions they would like to see on the survey.

Gary Fuchser reported on the Tri-State meeting he attended. Tri-State will have the re-financing done by November 1st. The Tri-State audit was completed with a good report.

Mike Van Buskirk and Bruce Troester reported on the NRECA Regional Meeting they attended.

Terry Curtiss reported that the Nebraska Supreme Court over ruled his petition for re-hearing for the NADC case, and it has been remanded to Lincoln County Court. 

There being no further business to come before the Board, the president declared the meeting adjourned at 4:50 PM. 

Approved: President

Signed: Secretary

Published: November 12, 2014