Minutes of the Regular Meeting NRPPD Board of Directors, January 20, 2015, Unapproved

The regular meeting of Directors of Northwest Rural Public Power District (NRPPD) was held in the Conference Room of the District January 20, 2015 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, Lee Ahrens, Mike Van Buskirk, Wayne Cobb, Tony Hindman, and Gary Fuchser.

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

The Open Meeting Law posting was acknowledged. 

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

Terry Curtiss administered the Oath of Office to the elected directors, Lee Ahrens and Tony Hindman. The Oath of Office was signed by both duly elected directors at the General Election held in November of 2014.

Robert Rickenbach recognized and thanked Jim Johnson for his 18 years of service on the NRPPD Board of Directors.

Robert Rickenbach requested Terry Curtiss act as President Pro Tem for the election of board president. A motion was made by Bruce Troester, duly seconded by Mike Van Buskirk to nominate Lee Ahrens as president. A motion was then made by Gary Fuchser to cease nominations and elect Lee Ahrens as Board President, Wayne Cobb seconded the motion; motion carried. 

Mr. Ahrens took over as board chair and presided over the balance of the meeting.

A motion was made by Bruce Troester to nominate Wayne Cobb as Vice President, Gary Fuchser seconded the motion. A motion as made by Bruce Troester to cease nominations and elect Wayne Cobb as Vice President, Tony Hindman seconded the motion; motion carried.

A motion was made by Robert Rickenbach to nominate Bruce Troester as secretary, Wayne Cobb seconded the motion. A motion was made by Gary Fuchser to cease nominations and elect Robert Rickenbach as Secretary, Tony Hindman seconded the motion; motion carried.

A motion was made by Wayne Cobb to nominate Robert Rickenbach as Treasurer, Mike Van Buskirk seconded the nomination. A motion was made by Gary Fuchser to cease nominations and elect Robert Rickenbach as Treasurer, Mike Van Buskirk seconded the motion; motion carried

A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk to nominate Tony Hindman as Assistant Treasurer, Gary Fuchser seconded the motion. A motion was made by Robert Rickenbach to cease the nominations and elect Tony Hindman as Assistant Treasurer, Wayne Cobb seconded the motion; motion carried. 

A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded by Gary Fuchser to appoint Arlene Lahaye as recording secretary; motion carried.

A motion was made by Bruce Troester to nominate Gary Fuchser as the Tri-State representative for Northwest Rural Public Power District, Wayne Cobb seconded the motion. A motion was made by Robert Rickenbach to cease nominations and elect Gary Fuchser as NRPPD’s Tri-State representative, Wayne Cobb seconded the motion. Lee Ahrens, aye; Mike Van Buskirk, nay; Bruce Troester, aye; Tony Hindman, aye; Wayne Cobb, aye; Robert Rickenbach, aye; Gary Fuchser, abstain; motion carried.

A motion was made by Wayne Cobb to nominate Robert Rickenbach as NRPPD’s NREA Director and voting delegate, Gary Fuchser seconded the motion. A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk to cease the nominations and elect Robert Rickenbach as the NREA Director, Tony Hindman seconded the motion. Lee Ahrens, aye; Mike Van Buskirk, aye; Bruce Troester, aye; Tony Hindman, aye; Wayne Cobb, aye; Robert Rickenbach, abstain; Gary Fuchser, aye; motion carried.

A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded Bruce Troester, that the minutes of the meeting held December 18, 2014 be approved as published and mailed to all directors on January 13th; motion carried.

The regular meeting was adjourned and the 2015 Budget Hearing was called to order at 1:20 PM. There was no public attendance or comments. A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded by Robert Rickenbach to close the 2015 Budget Hearing at 1:23 PM and reconvene the regular meeting; motion carried. 

A motion was made by Wayne Cobb to accept the 2015 proposed budget, Mike Van Buskirk seconded the motion; motion carried.

Chance discussed the proposed 2015 residential rate and the components of the Access Charge. The proposed rate will decrease the first block of energy and the number of blocks in the rate. The Access Charge will be increased by $3.00 and a Time of Use, for all off peak energy, will be added to the rate. A discussion followed with a motion being made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded by Robert Rickenbach to approve the proposed residential rate for 2015; motion carried. The rate will be implemented on the bill for the March usage. 

Arlene Lahaye reviewed the December income statement and cash flow. Revenue for December was over budget by $9,550, and YTD revenue was under budget by $400,000. The cost of power was under budget for December by $19,081, and YTD cost of power was under budget by $136,510. The YTD Margin for 2015 $1,378,387 this is $54,815 over what was budgeted for year end. Cash Flow from operating, investment and financing activities for the month of December was also reviewed. A discussion followed with a motion being made by Robert Rickenbach, duly seconded by Mike Van Buskirk to accept the December financial reports; motion carried.

Russ Reichenberg reviewed the December safety report. Russ discussed the property damage and training that occurred in the month. There were no injuries for the month of December. A motion was made by Robert Rickenbach, duly seconded by Bruce Troester to accept the December safety report; motion carried.

Les informed the Board that the Scholarship Committee will meet in February to evaluate the scholarship applications and award scholarships.

Kelsey DeField will be a chaperone for the NREA Washington Your Tour in June.

The NREA Youth Energy Camp has changed its name to Youth Energy Leadership Camp.

Les also reported on the Tri-State Communication Advisory Meeting.

Ron reported on the cost of the AMI installations. The Substations where NRPPD uses NPPD’s injection equipment there was a one-time cost of $81,500 and at the other Substations the cost was $67,100.

Jim Johnson left the meeting at 2:15 PM.

Chance reported that the Tri-State Contract Committee has concluded with basically not accomplishing anything of merit. It was recommended to continue the policy of letting the Board consider exit methodology per the Bylaws, and to recommend that the Board consider actions that could be taken as part of Policies in regard to the 5% self-generation rules.

Chance reported that he and Russ will be meeting with Dakota Security for security coverage for the Crawford yard and office.

NRECA had a good return on the Employee Survey being conducted.

Chance reported on the NREA Legislative Update. 

Chance informed the Board NRPPD will be working with CFC on re-financing issues.

Gary Fuchser reported on the Tri-State Meeting. Tri-State has a $10 million equity return, $1.7 billion capital expenditure over the next 4 years, and $3 billion new debt. The EPA released their final ruling on the disposal of coal ash as non-hazardous waste.

Mike Van Buskirk suggested a strategic planning session for a future date.

A motion was made by Robert Rickenbach, duly seconded by Gary Fuchser to appoint Mike Van Buskirk as the voting delegate for NRUCFC and NRECA at the Annual Meeting in Orlando. Lee Ahrens, aye; Mike Van Buskirk, abstain; Bruce Troester, aye; Tony Hindman, aye; Wayne Cobb, aye; Robert Rickenbach, aye; Gary Fuchser, aye; motion carried.

The February meeting will be scheduled for February 16th at 1:00 PM.

Mike Van Buskirk will plan to attend the Legislative Conference in Washington DC.

Terry Curtiss informed the Board that on January 26th a call is scheduled with the Judge on the NADC issue for the purpose of establishing a date for briefs to be filed.

A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded by Wayne Cobb to go into an executive session at 3:05 PM to discuss the Manager Evaluation with Dan Burning; motion carried.

Chance Briscoe, Arlene Lahaye, Russ Reichenberg, Ron Housh, and Les Tlustos left the meeting.

A motion was made by Mike Van Buskirk, duly seconded by Tony Hindman to come out of executive session at 4:12 PM. Chance Briscoe rejoined the meeting to go through the Manager Evaluation, facilitated by Dan Bruning.

There being no further business to come before the Board, the president declared the meeting adjourned at 4:25 PM. 

Approved: President

Signed: Secretary

Published: February 4, 2015