Feature Articles

MVEA annual board meeting

By LC Grady

Mountain View Electric Association held its 82nd annual meeting of members June 8 at Falcon High School. Chief Executive Officer Ruth Marks and other members of the executive team welcomed members as they arrived. Each registered member received a stadium blanket with a logo that represented the evening’s baseball “home team” theme. 

Multiple informational booths, staffed by employees wearing baseball jerseys and caps, were available in the lobby. The booths included a lineman table with a power line equipment demonstration as well as informational brochures on subjects like power outages. 

Other booths included information on high-speed fiber internet through Conexon Connect, a fiber-to-the-home network MVEA project that will provide broadband internet to 100% of MVEA’s membership in the next five to six years; a “Go Electric” booth focused on electrification of a home, including available incentives and rebates; and a booth for “Operation Roundup,” MVEA’s program that allows customers to round up their bills, with the extra funds going toward charitable organizations, communities with special needs and individuals who have suffered from loss, personal disaster or medical emergencies.

Falcon High School students, dressed in team uniforms, served members a BBQ style dinner in the high school cafeteria. “We are here for the free stuff,” joked member Mike Kopp. “I am going to win the electric bike.” 

After dinner, members moved to the school auditorium. Joe Martin, president of the MVEA Board of Directors, welcomed members and officially opened the meeting, which began with an invocation by Pastor Michael Anderson from Grace Community Church, followed by the national anthem and a flag-waving video featuring the MVEA linemen and members reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Martin introduced people on the podium: Ruth Marks, CEO; Barry Springer, vice president of the board, representing District 6; and Matt Richardson, an attorney acting as the parliamentarian and assisting with the elections. 

Marks kicked off the drawing for door prizes with a baseball joke. Some prizes were only given to members who were present, and the top prize winners were announced at the meeting’s close. Prizes included a 55-inch Samsung TV, electric bikes, $50 bill credits, an electric leaf blower and various cash prizes as high as $500. 

Richardson announced that, according to the MVEA bylaws, Robert’s Rules of Order should control the meeting, with exceptions; and he confirmed that necessary legal requirements for notification were met and a quorum was present for the transaction of business, with 258 members present. 

Springer informed the members of the director election process; District 2 and District 7 had elections this year. Springer said 54,474 members received required election mailings, 2,724 ballots were received, satisfying the minimum 5% quorum. The two candidates nominated were incumbents Rick L. Gordon for District 2, who was uncontested and elected by voice vote per the bylaws; and Jim Riggins for District 7. Andrew Bussa was nominated by petition to run against Riggins — the contested election required a paper ballot. Jim Riggins was elected with 2,848 votes; Andrew Bussa received 2,132 votes.

Martin introduced the board members and their families and called for approval of June 2022 meeting minutes. She announced the four winners of the Youth Leadership Trip Contest; they will attend an all-expenses-paid weeklong trip to the Washington, D.C. Youth Tour in June or to the Colorado Electric Education Institute Cooperative Youth Leadership Camp in Clark, Colorado, in July. “As part of the leadership camp, students start their own cooperatives, elect a board of directors, review applications and select a general manager,” Marks said. “Congratulations to these four student leaders; I am confident they will represent Mountain View well.” She encouraged the members to direct any interested high school juniors and seniors to the MVEA website. Kevin Paddock, board director and chairperson of the education committee, announced 28 $1,000 scholarship winners. 

Martin presented the president’s report and announced there were no rate increases for the last six years. He discussed the cost drivers that determine the rates, and discussed the options for addressing the anticipated 8% increase from Tri-State Generation and Transmission Administration coming in January 2024. “Once we get the information from Tri-State, we will look at our rates and move forward,” Martin said. 

He then introduced a slide show of MVEA’s approach to mitigating the increase, which included implementing the “time-of-use” program, among others.“We want to come up with some type of day time-of-use charge,” Martin said. “We peak usually between 5 to 10 p.m.; and, if we can incentivize people to not plug in their electric vehicle, to not turn on the dishwasher or the dryer; it will help us save money; therefore, we will share those savings with you because the energy charge will be lower.” He also discussed capital credits in depth and announced that $3.1 million of capital credits were retired in 2022. “Over the years, MVEA has given over $78.9 million back to the membership.”

Marks thanked the prior CEO Jim Herron for leaving the cooperative in such good shape. She then introduced the 2023 strategy map and ran through some operations statistics. “MVEA has grown around 4% a year, and we don’t see this growth rate slowing down,” Marks said. 

Following the conclusion of the meeting, Martin and Marks answered members questions on various topics, including financial statements, and invited members to discuss any further questions or issues with them personally after the meeting. 

Mountain View three people

Mountain View crowd: Mountain View Electric Association held its 82nd annual members’ meeting June 8 at Falcon High School. A large crowd listens to the speakers. 

Mountain View CEO

Mountain View CEO: Ruth Marks, chief executive officer of Mountain View Electric, told the audience that MVEA has grown about 4% a year, and she doesn’t see it slowing down.

Mountain View crowd

Mountain View three people: Mike and Mary Kopp (left) from Limon, and Frank Colman from Falcon enjoyed the BBQ dinner. Falcon High School students served the diners in their team uniforms as part of the evening’s theme of “home team.” 

“We peak usually between 5 to 10 p.m.; and, if we can incentivize people to not plug in their electric vehicle, to not turn on the dishwasher or the dryer; it will help us save money; therefore, we will share those savings with you because the energy charge will be lower.” 

Joe Martin, president of the MVEA Board of Directors

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