Copper Wire Theft Causes Outage
Friday, 17 May 2013 14:38

On March 30th of this year, Grays Harbor PUD customers in the area around Hogan’s Corner experienced an outage. The cause of the outage was theft of copper wire. What made this theft unusual is that the thieves actually climbed power poles to cut the wire down. In total, five spans of wire were cut down and taken by the thieves. Suspects have since been apprehended, thanks to a speedy investigation by the Grays Harbor Sheriff’s Department and some much appreciated help from a local scrap metal dealer, Butcher’s Scrap Metal.

 “This is troubling, not only because of the cost and inconvenience to customers, but because it’s incredibly dangerous,” said Wes Gray, Grays Harbor PUD Chief Operating Officer. “This could easily result in serious injury or death to the person committing the crime.”

 The thieves took the wire to Butcher’s to sell it, using a false story about where the wire had come from. Butcher’s recorded enough information on the sellers for law enforcement to identify two suspects, who were later apprehended. The wire fetched only $300 as scrap, but the cost to repair the system exceeded $16,000.

“This is a completely unnecessary expense that has to be borne by our customers,” said Interim General Manager Doug Streeter. “We’re doing everything we can to prevent wire theft from happening, but we definitely appreciate customers keeping an eye out for suspicious activity.”

Customers who see anyone attempting to cut wire from a utility pole are urged to call 9-1-1 immediately.

 
Attempts to Modify Energy Independence Act Come up Short in Legislature
Friday, 17 May 2013 14:36

The Energy Independence Act, approved by voters as Initiative 937 in 2006, requires that utilities with at least 25,000 customers (like Grays Harbor PUD) meet certain standards for renewable energy and conservation.

The Act requires us to identify and achieve all cost-effective conservation, and to include a certain percentage of “qualifying” renewable energy in the power we sell to our customers – 3% starting in 2012, going up to 9% in 2016, and 15% in 2020. Hydropower, which makes up over 90% of the power we sell to customers, is not considered a qualifying renewable resource under the Act, which means we have to acquire additional resources or renewable energy credits (RECs) to comply with the law.

Your PUD has always supported conservation and renewable energy. The challenge is that we are a slow-growing utility and we don’t currently need additional resources to serve our customers. Acquiring resources or credits we don’t need only adds costs to our customers’ bills. This is why Grays Harbor, along with a number of other Washington utilities, has been actively seeking common sense changes to the law for the past few years.

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Board of Commissioners names Interim General Manager
Tuesday, 15 January 2013 10:46

The Grays Harbor PUD Board of Commissioners announced today that Doug Streeter will serve as Interim General Manager while the search process for a new General Manager continues.  Doug Streeter currently serves as the PUD’s Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer. He is responsible for managing the District’s Accounting Department as well as the investment of District funds. In addition, Mr. Streeter chairs the PUD’s Risk Management Committee which oversees management of the PUD’s power portfolio.   Doug Streeter has been with the District for nine years.

 

Last Updated on Saturday, 30 March 2013 09:32
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Commissioner's Corner

Russ Skolrood, District Three Commissioner

Recently the administrative team along with the Commissioners worked on a strategic plan for the Grays Harbor PUD. I have worked on strategic planning before but I was impressed with the process and the initial outcome of this important planning effort. Strategic plans are too often just words and catch phrases that businesses put on the wall to show that they have a general focus for their business.

For me, a strategic plan should set the direction for all of your actions and business decisions in the future. A powerful strategic plan does not just involve management but should have the added power of having buy-in from all your employees and customers. We are on our way to developing a very strong plan at Grays Harbor PUD because we are working hard at focusing on the reason we are in our industry. We are also making sure that we are involving all the stakeholders in the process so that the whole “Team” is on the same page and rowing the boat in the same direction. Grays Harbor PUD is here to deliver safe, reliable power at the most practical cost.

 

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