Dear Member:

This month, there are a few different things I’d like to share in kind of an “odds-n-ends” issue.

Your co-op family is bound together by a common desire to serve our communities’ needs. The members and employees of Douglas Electric Co-op in Roseburg are today finding their way forward in the face of last month’s senseless tragedy on the Umpqua Community College campus.  Co-ops live and breathe in the communities we serve and when the unthinkable happens among us, our hearts ache for the families and friends honoring lives taken too soon. May they find peace in the love that surrounds them in Roseburg, in Lane County, throughout our state, and throughout our nation. Please check our website in November for information on how Douglas Electric plans to help those affected and how you can join them in that effort.

The winter season is here and for those of you who enjoy burning wood you’ll find useful information about winter wood heating on pages 28-29. For those of us who live in Oakridge, Springfield, or Eugene areas there can be days when stagnant inversions occur and the wood smoke lingers causing a Home Wood Heating advisory to be issued by the Lane Regional Air Protection Agency (LRAPA).  LRAPA’s color coded daily advisories will keep you informed on when it’s okay to enjoy your wood.

Budget season is here as well for Lane Electric. There are several factors pushing our costs up. In September’s Ruralite you read about cost increases from our power supplier, the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). Effective in October, BPA’s average wholesale power costs went up 7.1% and BPA’s transmission costs went up 4.4%. Further, our revenues have been down because of the mild January through March. I’m proud of the effort by your directors and staff when we tightened our belts this year by cutting back on expenses and delaying others to get through this year. In November and December the Board will evaluate these complex influences to arrive at a rate decision that keeps Lane Electric fiscally sound and rates reasonable.

Matt Michel
General Manager
Lane Electric