Manager's Report - January 2015
2015 Outlook at Butler REC
Happy New Year! It’s hard to believe another year has come and gone. 2014 was a very challenging year here at Butler REC and 2015 promises to be just as challenging.
Co-op Refunds $600,000 to Members
I hope that most of you noticed the holiday refund on your December bill. In the true cooperative non-profit spirit we determined that our generation and transmission cooperative had made more money than needed for operation due to some refinancing efforts. Your Management team and Board of Trustees “went to bat” for you and voted to return $600,000 to members in a holiday refund.
Taking Action on EPA Regulations
We all realize that the cost of electric service is rising way too fast. Regulations are being put in place by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at an alarming rate will continue to drive up your electric bills. We have teamed up with all of the electric utilities in the country to try and get a reprieve from these regulations.
I want to encourage you to join in our grassroots e orts to keep coal as one of our generation fuel alternatives. Coal is the cheapest and most plentiful fuel to generate electricity in today’s technology. The EPA is trying to completely eliminate it as a fuel source. This is the Obama Administration’s
goal regardless of the cost on your electric bill.
If you agree that we need to continue looking for new and cleaner ways to generate electricity, but do so in a way that costs remain reasonable then go to www.action.coop fi nd out more about this issue and you can send your message to the EPA by clicking on the “Take Action” tab.
2015 Annual Meeting Scheduled
As we ring in the New Year we are reminded of New Year’s resolutions, tax returns and preparing for this year’s Annual Meeting in March. While that may seem a long way o , Butler REC’s management and employees work diligently to bring quality information to our Annual Meeting. This year’s meeting is scheduled for March 12, but due to construction at the Circle High School in Towanda we will have this year’s meeting at the Circle Middle School in Benton.
For the cooperative, a new year also means a new budget, work plan and goals for the coming year. The Board has just finished working on our budget and work plan for 2015. One of our major strategic planning goals is that the cooperative continues to emphasis right-of-way maintenance, “i.e. tree trimming.” The emphasis on trees has been so successful in improving reliability that we have once again budgeted for additional right-of-way maintenance.
We are finally closing in on the end of our decade-long repair of our system needed because of the ice storms of 2002, 2005, 2007, and 2009. We have also received two mitigation grants to help improve the chances that our distribution line can withstand future storms. We should finish with the last of these two mitigation projects this year. This has been a major undertaking that should result in fewer and shorter outages as we go through the winter and spring storm seasons.
We have many other projects in the works for this next year and I will keep you informed as we move throughout the year. The employees here at Butler REC want to thank you for your support over this past year. We have had a lot of challenges and I am proud of how our employees have responded. Have a wonderful 2015.