If you know anyone who lives in or around Castle Rock and is willing to do a little paid work for clean energy, read on.
I’ve written before about IREA Voices, (here and here.) They are a group of dedicated volunteers who are trying to change the way their electric co-ops, Intermountain Rural Electric Association is run.
In Colorado, Rural Electric Co-ops (RECs) are exempt from the requirements of Amendment 37, which mandates that our public utilities get a certain percentage of their power from renewables. Ostensibly, this is because they are owned and controlled by their members (the people served by the utility.) In reality, very few members vote in the elections (often as little as 10%) and so the boards can often end up being very unrepresentative.
In the case of IREA, this manifested itself with IREA’s general manager, Stan Lewandowski, contributing $100,000 of ratepayer’s money to a prominent global warming skeptic, and soliciting other RECs to do the same.
While the low turnout in REC board elections can be a big problem, it is also an opportunity. While IREA is out funding global warming skeptics, perhaps the most progressive electric utility in Colorado is Delta-Montrose Electric Association (DMEA), and it’s all due to who is on the board.
IREA Voices is working to change the IREA board, and they have a real chance of doing so. Due to low turnout, board elections of RECs often hinge on only a handful of votes. IREA Voices is fielding candidates in three of the four districts up for election, but they are still looking for someone to run in district 4, around Castle Rock.
Being a board member is a paid position ($300 a day), so if you know anyone who might be willing to run for the IREA board in Castle Rock, please send me an email and I’ll hook them up with the right people.
(Or they can do it themselves on the IREA Voices website.)
An email from the IREA Voices follows the break…
FROM THE IREA-VOICES STEERING COMMITTEEThe IREA-Voices meeting last Thursday was very successful. We discussed our plans for making IREA more responsive to its member-owners and for creating a more socially responsible coop. Those in attendance brought with them good ideas and a willingness to participate in this effort.As many of you are aware, the deadline for making nominations for the election of IREA Board Members is coming up quickly, February 6. Districts 1, 2, 4, and 6 are up for election. So far, Mike Daniels, Jake Meffley and Michael Kempe have volunteered to run for districts 2, 6 and 1 respectively. We have people who are considering running for district 4 (Castle Rock http://www.ireavoices.org/node/45 ), but no definite commitments yet; therefore, we are requesting that you help us in this search.Being a director will require you to attend 12 monthly meetings, the annual meeting, and probably a few others each year. Directors are compensated $300 for every day they conduct official IREA business. New Directors will also be provided with a 2 day training course to help prepare them for their responsibilities. Serving as an electric coop director is similar to being on the board of directors of a business. Your responsibilities will be primarily to approve and guide the work of IREA managers and engineers.IREA-Voices will of course be there to provide support to candidates. Please let us know if you, or someone you know in district 4 (Castle Rock) may be willing to run for an IREA director position.