Manager’s Message — January 2020

A New Year, A New Decade

Dear Co-op Community Members:

Debi WilsonAs we rang in 2020, we also rang in a new decade of opportunity. Welcome to the 2020s. A new year brings opportunity for reflection on our past and optimism for our future. As we close out 2019, I want to reflect on some highlights from this past year.

February brought us a storm for the decades. When we thought the ice storm of 2016 was the worst we had seen, Mother Nature had to close out the 2010s with a bang. The February storm caused widespread damage to 77% of our electric system. It impacted 10,120 members and our small line crew of 16 increased to a crew of 111 linemen. As a utility, we learned the importance of preparedness and shared the message with you all year long.

In April, I was honored to be hired as your general manager. After serving Lane Electric members in various roles for nearly two decades, I was thrilled to be chosen to lead your cooperative. Being in this new role has been a highlight of the year and a true honor.

In May, I visited with you at our five district meetings. We updated members on the broadband feasibility study, Bonneville Power Administration rates, our financial and legal reports, and our distribution system report. We look forward to seeing you at our 2020 meetings.

I visited Washington, D.C., on behalf of our members and cooperatives to advocate for the RURAL Act, which will help us maintain reasonable rates by protecting our tax-exempt status.

During the summer, line crews and tree trimmers worked to improve reliability. We also changed out reclosers to do our part to reduce fire risk to our beautiful community.

I am proud we continued supporting our local youth. In 2019, we distributed scholarships totaling approximately $20,000 to seven deserving students. We also offer a scholarship for a trip for one high school junior to visit our nation’s capital. Lastly, we continued our support of FFA and 4-H.

Lane Electric supported local communities through local events, celebrations, and parades. We also donated to local schools and grad parties. And very dear to our cooperative, we provided lunch to our veterans.

Lane Electric celebrated 80 years of service. We went from serving 650 members in 1939 to the nearly 13,000 we proudly serve today.

As we ring in 2020, we are proud to serve you, our members. We hope you enjoyed a wonderful holiday season with family and friends.

From our families to yours, Happy New Year!

Debi Wilson