KMEA to Provide Electric Line Maintenance Services

Following in the direction of the 2019 KMEA Strategic Plan, KMEA will provide electric line maintenance services to one of its members, the City of Dighton, beginning on May 1, 2020. Under the two year agreement, KMEA will provide the labor for the operation and maintenance of the City’s distribution system. KMEA has been exploring providing these services to its members over the last several years and the City of Dighton will be the first member to receive these services.

The City has contracted for line maintenance service for over 20 years with the local rural electric cooperative and felt it was the right time to make a change. “We are excited about the new agreement with KMEA and believe this partnership with KMEA will provide us more control and involvement in maintenance and health of our electric system,” said Dighton’s Mayor Doyle Capra.

Initially, KMEA will hire one journeymen lineman to work closely with the City staff, with eventual plans to expand to a two person line crew by the end of the year.  Once the two man crew up is up and running, KMEA will be able to assist other members in western Kansas that need assistance with line maintenance and special electric system projects.

“We are excited that the City was willing to step out and allow KMEA to help them with regards to their system,” stated KMEA President, Mike Muirhead. “One of the top needs identified through a 2019 survey of our membership was line maintenance services. This is the kick start that was needed for us to begin providing these services to our membership and we hope to expand to other parts of the State in the future.”

City of Kiowa’s Efforts to Offset Economic Impacts from COVID-19

(Taken from the City of Kiowa Social Media Post from April 2nd)

In an effort to help our local businesses mitigate economic effects of COVID-19, every residential utility customer is receiving $15 in Kiowa Bucks, by mail, to use at our local establishments. Each customer will receive three $5 cards that can be used at any business permanently LOCATED in Kiowa that will accept them. Transient vendors do not apply. There are a few important notes about these cards. Vendors WILL NOT make change. If you pay for your $2 item with a $5 card you WILL NOT get $3 in return nor will you get the card back. These ARE NOT gift certificates. Secondly, these cannot be used to pay for any City services (utilities, permits, fines, etc.), and the cards must be used by Mother’s Day, May 10, 2020. Please drop by the local shops, grocery store, restaurants, gas stations, hardware, automotive stores/shops and help our small businesses out during these unprecedented times.

Yet another example of how we are #CommunityPowered    

Gardner City Council votes to give utility residential customers free month of electricity

(Taken from March 31st City of Gardner Social Media Post)

During last night’s special meeting held by the Gardner City Council, councilmembers voted to eliminate the electric charges that were billed in March for residential customers and credit commercial customers for the use of their first 5000 KW/h of electricity. The city initially changed its rate structure for electric services at the start of the year, which already gave more than 82 percent of its customers a two percent reduction.

“We know we have residents who are financially struggling with bills and other obligations due to the impacts of COVID-19,” said Gardner Mayor Steve Shute. “We are fortunate that we own our utilities, so we can authorize these changes and provide this much welcome relief for all in our community while they wait for federal government assistance.”

Eliminating a month’s worth of billing expenses to residential customers and covering up to 5000KW/h of electricity for businesses will cost the city approximately $790,000 in lost revenue.

“Our city has a robust electric fund that can absorb this loss of revenue, and we’ve purposely kept it strong to address any unforeseen issues that may impact our electric service,” Shute said. “While we’re not using this money to pay for an infrastructure upgrade or replacement project, we are doing whatever we can to help our residents and businesses get through this unforeseen pandemic. This is a time we have to take care of one another and that should start with leadership.”

Residential and commercial customers will automatically receive an adjustment for their March billed electric charges.

This is exactly what #CommunityPowered is all about!

City of Jetmore gets creative with Covid-19 Economic Support!

(Taken from March 26th City of Jetmore Social Media Post)

City of Jetmore Implements Local Economic Shot in the Arm:

In light of the current Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting economic difficulties many are experiencing, the City of Jetmore is mailing out today to all utility customers, coupons for purchase of goods and services from businesses within the city limits of Jetmore. Each utility customer will receive 2-$10 coupons. Though they are valid for use at any Jetmore business, it is our hope that they will be used in particular at those businesses most affected by the social distancing recommendation and state mandated group size limitations. Coupons not valid for payment of city utility bills nor tax bills with the county. Minimum purchase is for the face value of the coupon—no change is to be given by businesses to coupon users.

Each coupon is numbered and there are spaces for the user to write his or her name and the date on the coupon when redeeming. Businesses will submit collected coupons to the city for payment at the time of the May council meeting on May 7.

If all coupons are redeemed and submitted to the city for payment, the result will be an $8,460 contribution to the local economy. So have a meal on us, or a drink, or a roll or two of toilet paper.

Way to think outside of the box!  Jetmore!!

 

CITY OF GARDEN CITY RECOGNIZED AS A “PLATINUM” LEVEL RELIABLE PUBLIC POWER PROVIDER!

The City of Garden City Electrical Department has earned a Reliable Public Power Provider (RP3)®  Platinum designation from the American Public Power Association for providing reliable and safe electric service. Three years ago Garden City was recognized with a gold designation, and now has moved into a higher level of recognition.

The RP3 designation, which lasts for three years, recognizes public power utilities that demonstrate proficiency in four key disciplines: reliability, safety, workforce development, and system improvement. Criteria include sound business practices and a utility-wide commitment to safe and reliable delivery of electricity. Garden City joins more than 275 public power utilities nationwide that hold the RP3 designation.

“Receiving an RP3 designation is a great honor and demonstrates a utility’s commitment to implementing industry best practices in utility operations,” says Aaron Haderle, Chair of the Association’s RP3 Review Panel and Manager of Transmission and Distribution Operations at ‎Kissimmee Utility Authority, Florida. “RP3 utilities are consistently looking to improve their workforce, system reliability, and safety to serve their communities better.”

“This is a great honor,” said Mike Muirhead, Public Utilities Director for the City of Garden City “We take a lot of pride in the work we do to power our community. It’s nice to be recognized as among the ‘best of the best’ on a national level.”

This year we celebrate 30 years of Joint Action towards reliable and cost effective gas for KMGA Members! 

Comments from Gil Hanson on The Progress of Gas Joint Action in KS 1989 (2)

 

Now Hiring – Journey Level Lineman / KMEA

Natural Gas Utility Workers’ Day: March 18

This annual nationwide event is intended to build public awareness about the hard work done by the employees of natural gas utilities. On this day, we will also educate residents on the environmental, safety and cost benefits of using clean, reliable and affordable natural gas. Our customers recognize the need to access reliable, affordable, safe energy and depend on the service of natural gas utility employees for that need.

Please see the attached sample Op Ed and Press Release if you would like to recognize your gas utility workers.

Gas_Utility_Workers_Day_Press_Release_2020

2020_Natural_Gas_Utility_Workers_Day_Op_Ed_

You can also follow this link to the APGA website for additional info.

https://www.apga.org/events/naturalgasutilityworkersday