Watts News
 Published for the members of North Itasca Electric Cooperative
VOL. 20 NO. 8  -  August 2017

‘Local Democracy’: New legislation grants local authority to electric cooperatives


Municipal utilities in the state of Minnesota have had similar authority for over 30 years. With the passage of the provisions, the legislature affirmed the value of local decision-making for electric cooperatives across Minnesota. As your locally owned electric cooperative, we know that local decision-making can result in providing you, our member, with unique rate structures, products and services that reflect our local community’s needs while helping keep administrative costs down.

To adopt the authority to implement the provisions of Minnesota Statute 216B.164, an electric cooperative must pass a resolution adopting this authority; and, they must adopt rules implementing this section of statute. At North Itasca Electric Cooperative’s June board meeting, your cooperative’s board of directors (made up of local members, and elected by local members) voted unanimously to state their intent to adopt the authority authorized in the Local Democracy legislation.

The purpose of this change is to secure local decision making, not to substantively change the way North Itasca Electric Cooperative interacts with distributed generation. If you are interested in this change, we invite you, our member-owner, an opportunity to share your opinions about Local Democracy.

You may submit any questions, comments, or concerns in writing to Mr. Danny J Hoskins, Interim CEO, North Itasca Electric Cooperative, P. O. Box 227, Bigfork, MN 55628; or by email to Mr. Hoskins at danh@nieci.com; or via phone call to Mr. Hoskins at (218) 743-3131 or (800) 762-4048; or you may come to the office for a personal appearance with Mr. Hoskins at our office in Bigfork, Minnesota located at 301 Main Ave. Please, we ask that if you plan to come in person to our office that you schedule an appointment for a visit to ensure that Mr. Hoskins is available when you choose to visit.

You may also choose to address the entire North Itasca Electric Cooperative board of directors at the next North Itasca Electric Cooperative board meeting scheduled for August 24, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. at the North Itasca Electric Cooperative office located at 301 Main Ave, Bigfork, MN. Because of the board’s vigorous agenda, we do ask that you schedule a time for your attendance at the board meeting to ensure ample time is allotted for all member questions, comments or concerns.

Should your North Itasca Electric Cooperative board of directors feel they answered all member questions, comments, or concerns adequately, they intend to call for a formal vote to pass the resolution and adopt the Cooperative Rules implementing 216B.164.

Return to the August 2017 Issue