Over 300 people, representing 222 registered member households and businesses attended Minnesota Valley Electric Cooperative’s 82nd Annual Meeting at Le Center Elementary/Middle School the evening of Tuesday, April 9.
All three incumbents were returned to the Board of Directors for three-year terms.
In District II, Gary Haberman of Chanhassen received 774 votes while challenger Raymond Briggs of Prior Lake receiving 613 votes. Approximately 10 percent of District II members cast votes.
In Districts I and III, Deborah Erickson of Savage and Jim Connelly of St. Thomas were unopposed and were returned to office by acclamation.
General Manager Ryan Hentges’ said MVEC continues to focus on the key areas of safety, reliability, digital security, cost effectiveness and member satisfaction. The co-op is rooted in a heritage of service to community and continues to evolve to meet member needs with cost-effective renewable energy options and programs to help members use electricity efficiently.
Gerry Mareck, vice president of finance, presented the 2018 financial review. He said MVEC’s average electric rate remains 10 percent below the average rates of U.S. and similar-sized electric cooperatives, which is accomplished through load management, member participation in Energy Wise and generation programs and using the co-op’s rate reserve fund to minimize rate impacts.
The co-op has kept local spending flat and at the same time for the past five years has returned over $1 million in Capital Credits back to members each of those years.
The annual meeting also featured scholarship presentations, funded by MVEC’s unclaimed capital credits. Fifteen $1,000 scholarships were awarded to area high school seniors. MVEC’s wholesale power provider, Basin Electric Power Cooperative of Bismarck, also awarded a $1,000 scholarship. (See list below)
Natalie Thoms, a sophomore at Prior Lake High School, was announced as MVEC’s representative on the 2019 Youth Tour, a national leadership trip to Washington, D.C., sponsored by America’s rural electric cooperative.
MVEC Scholarship Winners
|District 1||High School|
|Natalie Gerkin||Lakeville North|
|Benjamin Jung||Prior Lake|
|Sadie Schermerhorn||Lakeville South|
|District 2||High School|
|Madilyn Krentz||Sibley East|
|District 3||High School|
|Alex Olson||Prior Lake|
|Montana Tolzman||Le Sueur-Henderson|
|Maggie Trnka||Tri City United|
|Joe Weiers||New Prague|
|Basin Electric scholarship||High School|
|Justin Garrison||Prior Lake|