Power Lines Official Publication of Powder River Energy Corporation
CEO Straight Talk By Mike Easley
Just like you I am pretty weary of being barraged with negative news in the headlines. If you reflect over the past year there has been a lot happening in our world. It seems like a lot of things are seen through a “Post September 11, 2001” looking glass. I wanted to spend my time with you this month focusing on good news. September is annual membership meeting month and during this meeting I will be providing a report to you on how Powder River Energy (PRECorp) is doing. In addition, we will be giving special recognition to those folks who have worked so hard in years past to help make PRECorp the dynamic and successful electric cooperative it is today. September marks my second year of attending the PRECorp annual meeting as your CEO, and I can tell you that things are good at your electric cooperative. We have load growth, a stable wholesale power supply, and a team of dedicated and hardworking people who keep the lights on. A main driver in our load growth is the coal bed methane (CBM) activity. The slowdown of the breakneck pace of the CBM development has provided us the opportunity to regroup and prepare for the next wave. We have spent considerable time and effort to understand CBM development now and in the future. Our first effort was developing a load forecast that indicates CBM development reaching 200 MW by 2012. The next step is understanding how the PRECorp electrical system will be built out to meet this electrical demand. This study is called the “CBM Buildout Plan” and it will be completed in September. Our ultimate goal is to have an organized and well thought out buildout plan in order to provide power when and where it is needed, and to do so with minimal risk to the rest of the PRECorp membership. Our relationship with Basin Electric, our wholesale power supplier, continues to be a win-win relationship. Basin has an extremely competitive mix of power supply resources. In addition, they are bringing on the newest additions to the resource mix with the completion of three 15 MW combustion turbine sites in PRECorp’s service territory. The units are also expected to be a win-win resource for PRECorp and Basin Electric. Clearly there is a lot of activity at PRECorp. Sometimes it is hard to understand how this affects you, the end customer. “Keeping Customers First” is a part of PRECorp’s game plan and our recently filed rate case is another piece of good news. The CBM customer class received a slight increase; however, that increase is attributed mainly to special provisions for managing the unique risks associated with Continued on back page>>>
Reminder: Annual Membership Meeting Saturday, Sept. 21 10:30 am. Newcastle High School, Newcastle, WY
We Get Our Power From You. Your electric cooperative is a special organization. Instead of out-of-town stockholders, we are owned by the people we serve. Instead of sending money out of town, we return profits to the community. Most importantly, our customers are our source of power and direction. You see, we’re not just your electric service company. We are your friends and neighbors. From the line workers to the board of directors. That’s why all of us here at your electric co-op work so hard to deliver the best and most affordable electric service possible. We know that we can’t deliver electricity without getting the power from you.
>>> CEO Straight Talk—continued
serving the CBM customer. Our residential rates continue to be stable. We filed our rate case with the Wyoming Public Service Commission on July 12, 2002, and we are currently in the review process. Our goal is to have this completed so that the new rates become effective in January of 2003. One of the best things about PRECorp is the team of dedicated folks who work together to keep the lights on. As we move out of the summer season and look towards fall and winter you can rest easy knowing we are here to serve you, and that we care. If there is anything we can do to help your experience with PRECorp be one you look forward to, please do not hesitate to let us know.
Heating System Health Checkup
Many utilities, including electric cooperatives, have a number of outages each year which are caused by people shooting at power equipment like line insulators, utility poles, transmission towers and transformers. In many, if not all, areas, shooting at power facilities is vandalism—a crime punishable by fines and/or jail sentences. Shooting at power equipment is also very dangerous. Not only can someone be injured by the gunshot, but the resulting power outages present risks to electric co-op personnel who must repair the damage and to the customers who may depend on the power for life support equipment. So please, don’t shoot at the power equipment. It’s illegal, it’s senseless and it’s risky. And if you see someone else doing it, report it to us or local law enforcement officials immediately.
As fall arrives, it’s time to have your heating system checked and serviced by a qualified professional. No matter what kind of system you have, a heating system check-up will ensure that it’s operating efficiently and safely before the first cold days arrive. That heating safety check should also include any portable heaters that you may be using. Make sure the cord to a portable electric heater is in good condition and that the switches and controls are all working properly. If you use a fireplace or wood stove during the winter, have the chimney cleaned and the flues checked out. Taking these simple steps now can help you stay comfortable—and safe—this winter. Source: National Electrical Safety Foundation
SCHOOL IS OPEN
Electrical Safety Most of us don't think much about electricity unless we are forced to go without it. But just like light bulbs and appliances, the electrical system in your home deserves your attention. The National Electrical Safety Foundation urges consumers to take an electrical tour throughout their homes to look for potential hazards. Many potential hazards are easily identified and corrected. • You can check to see that lamps and extension cords aren't cracked, frayed or covered by rugs or furniture. • Check light bulbs to determine that the wattage is appropriate for lighting fixtures. • Electrical appliances should be kept away from damp and hot surfaces and have appropriate air circulation. Dim or flickering lights, arcs or sparks, sizzling or buzzing sounds from your electrical systems, odors, hot switch plates, loose plugs and damaged insulation, among other things, are signs of potential hazards and should be looked at by a qualified electrician.
Power Lines A publication of Powder River Energy Corp. P. O. Box 930 Sundance, WY 82729 As an official publication of Powder River Energy Corporation, the purpose of Power Lines is to communicate to member/ customers information concerning their electric cooperative, and to offer suggestions and ideas regarding the safe, efficient, and economical use of electric energy. Power Lines Editor: Mike Blenkush