Okanogan County PUD commissioners recognized journeyman lineman Bruce Rawley for 15 years of service at the April 22 board meeting.
Rawley started as a warehouseman in 2004. In 2005, he bid and was awarded the lineman apprenticeship, passing his test to become a journeyman lineman in 2009.
In other business, the board:
- Passed the first reading of an updated governance policy, which guides interactions between the board and staff.
- Passed the first reading of an updated wage and salary grade program, which updates the 2017 non-bargaining salary schedule in preparation for 2020. The schedule includes a 4.7% increase overall, accounting for two years without changes to the salary schedule. It will not change the 2019 budget.
- Heard from General Manager Steve Taylor that the Twisp to Winthrop reroute project began construction that morning, so the Winthrop/Mazama areas are only served via the Loup for now until the project is complete in several weeks.
- Approved an amended contract with Max J. Kuney Company for up to $250,000 (a $50,000 increase) to include additional planning and investigation regarding the dam safety dewatering and inspecting of Enloe Dam.
- Heard from Treasurer Janet Crossland that there was another decrease in March in the fund balance due to a large tax payment in February and higher than normal power purchases in both February and March.
- Heard the February financial report from Director of Finance Don Coppock, who said that most numbers are tracking consistently with the time of year. He also mentioned that staff is working on a draft professional services contract for a cost of service study, to begin soon.
- Heard from Director of Power Resources and Broadband Services Ron Gadeberg that the Nine Canyon Wind project will not raise its rates this year. The district pays $69 per megawatt now, taking into account bonds which are paid off in 2023. Once paid off, the power will cost likely around $25 per MW. He also said that he is talking with Energy Northwest about the possibility for grants to build electric vehicle charging stations in Okanogan County.
- Heard from Information Systems Manager Jerry Day that the district is looking into phone system upgrades and the program Call Capture, which could enable the district to send out notices for outages or disconnects.