President's report 2018

Ensuring Safe, Reliable, and Cost-Efficient Energy since 1939: A look back at 2017

As I look back over 2017, it was quite a year! It was a year filled with challenges for both the cooperative and, you, the membership.

In May of 2017, we were all hit with historic flooding. This flooding resulted in the second most costly storm damage in Howell-Oregon Electric Cooperative history. Approximately 2,300 members were without power. Howell-Oregon crews had to do something they are not accustomed to doing... wait until the water receded to get access to the lines that were down or damaged to restore power. Because of the scope of the flooding, early on we requested assistance from other cooperatives. Over 85 linemen from other cooperatives/contractors answered the call to assist us in our time of need, just as we have helped others in their time of need. All total, the historic flooding cost the cooperative approximately $2.2 million by the time all power was restored.

Just when we thought we were finished and crews could get much needed rest, storms hit our system again on Memorial Day weekend. This resulted in HOEC crews working throughout the holiday weekend to restore power to members.

Now, enough on the challenges. Lets spend a little time on what was accomplished outside the storms in 2017. System improvements each year are critical to maintain and improve reliability to members. There were 1,758 poles that were replaced, and over 600 miles of electrical line right of way was recleared. These improvements help maintain and improve the reliability that you expect from your cooperative.

Whether crews are working storms or maintaining and improving reliability to you, the members, safety is always a priority. During the two major storms NO employees were injured. Additionally, employees of Howell-Oregon Electric Cooperative built a safety demonstration trailer. This trailer is designed to educate the public on electrical safety. It has already been used for logger safety seminars, school presentations, and MoDOT. Many more demonstrations are in the planning stages. You will see this demonstration at Annual Meeting as part of the preshow.

There are a few changes to Annual Meeting this year. Registration will open at 4:00 p.m. and food will be available beginning at 4:30 p.m. Hotdogs and corndogs along with your favorite beverage will be available so bring the family out. Dawson Hollow (formerly Link Union) will return as the entertainment this year. Lastly, the cooperative will have great prizes to giveaway. A sampling of these are Silver Dollar City tickets, Springfield Cardinal baseball tickets, TV’s and many other great prizes.

I hope to see you at Annual Meeting!

Jim Lawrence

The HOEC Annual Meeting will be the evening of Friday, May 4 at the Civic Center.

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