Watts News
 Published for the members of North Itasca Electric Cooperative
VOL. 22 NO. 4  -  April 2019

CEO Report


This rain that is falling has me crossing my fingers spring is on the way! I have a few projects planned this summer and I want warmer weather before starting them.

I know we’re a long way from digging holes in the ground, but I want to remind everyone to call before you dig! North Itasca Electric Cooperative is more than happy to locate our wires. There are multiple ways to use the Gopher State One Call service. GSOC has a user-friendly website, phone service, and even an app (who doesn’t these days?). Be sure to check out www.gopherstateonecall.org before your projects start this summer.

Why is it that rain reminds me of summer storms, oh and outages? North Itasca Electric is taking steps to prevent outages this summer. We have hired Powell Excavating to clear and brush about 1/6th of our system. This area will be around Talmoon, Marcell and Scenic Pines, the southeast section of our territory. Right-of-way maintenance is crucial for system safety and reliability. We will all benefit from maintaining the ROW. Outages cost money, also when the trees are rubbing the lines the electricity is finding a path to ground. We are still “using” this electricity, it is flowing through the meter just like leaving your lights on at home. We call this line loss; the better job we can do to manage the line loss the more we save as a cooperative. I know it is difficult to lose those trees, but again, it’s crucial to the safety of everyone to have a properly maintained right-of-way.

We are deep in the planning stages of the annual meeting. This year we are doing things a little different. We will be down in Marcell on a Thursday night. We’re trying to make it easier for more of our members to make it to the meeting. We will have a little entertainment, great food, and a short meeting to make sure you are well informed about your cooperative. I plan on giving you a bill credit to thank you for your time in attending the annual meeting. Mark your calendar for Thursday, June 13 at the Marcell Family Center.

I must leave you with one last thought. I recently had a rich conversation with a Member-Owner over in the Sand Lake area. We discussed mandates and the negative impacts they would have on North Itasca. This gentleman was well educated in the struggle of the power companies in today’s market. One thing that came out of the conversation was the need for education and true understanding of the issues North Itasca Electric faces.

We need to stand together if we want to have a chance at maintaining the lifestyle we are accustom to in small towns. We all need to be aware of the issues faced. I would be honored to come speak with any group about our cooperative. The more we share and understand together, the stronger we will be now and into the future.

By your side,

Return to the April 2019 Issue