NESC Code Seminar rescheduled due to winter storm: MEUW had plans to host a one-day seminar this week to share details about updates to the National Electrical Safety Code (NESC). A winter storm expected to impact travel has prompted a reschedule. The seminar will now take place on Wednesday, March 22, in Mauston. Bruce Beth and Justin Franz from Forster Electrical Engineering will lead the program, which will include group discussions and Q&A around rule interpretations, compliance issues, with information about resources for help. Those who registered and are unable to attend the new date will be contacted and offered a refund. Registrations for the new date are being accepted here.
Nowak set to leave PSC March 1: Long-time Public Service Commissioner Ellen Nowak has notified Gov. Tony Evers in a letter that she intends to vacate the post when her term expires on March 1. First appointed to the PSC by former Gov. Scott Walker in 2011, Nowak served until March 2018 (including a stint as chair from 2015-18) when she became Secretary of the Department of Administration. She rejoined the PSC after being reappointed in December 2018.
Registration is now open for Credit and Collections Seminar: Every other year, MEUW holds a seminar to share information about the rules and regulations for utility collections and provide attendees with the most up-to-date details to make the process effective and efficient. This year’s seminar is planned for Wednesday, March 29. The agenda includes a refresher from the Public Service Commission (PSC) about disconnections, deferred payment agreements, deposits, and foreclosures. Attendees also will have a chance to get the latest about energy-efficiency programs and resources available to help customers who qualify for energy assistance. The complete agenda and registration details are available here.
We know from member feedback that the training MEUW provides for lineworkers is “can’t-miss.” In an effort to make it easier for you to plan, we are sharing a 90-day training schedule. You can access it here. Like most calendars, the minute it’s published, something will cause it to change, so please be patient as we work through the process to provide the most accurate and up-to-date training calendar we can. As always, if you have questions or feedback, please contact MEUW Manager of Safety Services Mike Czuprynko at (608) 478-2530.
Applications for Safety Awards are due next week: MEUW enjoys recognizing member utilities for taking steps to improve their overall safety performance. We are now accepting applications for 2022 performance measures. Each utility is encouraged to take time to compile the necessary information and submit the application spreadsheet, which is available at MEUW.org/safetyawards. The deadline to submit the required documentation is Wednesday, March 1. The awards will be presented at the Annual Conference in May.
MEUW’s Legislative and Regulatory Committee held a regular meeting recently. The minutes from their discussions are here (member log-in required). Please direct questions to a member of the L&R Committee or MEUW’s Director of Legislative and Regulatory Relations Tyler Vorpagel.
Watt-Hour Meter Institute will highlight “ABCs of Electric Metering”: MEUW will host its annual metering workshop March 14-16 in Green Bay, and the program has a new focus for 2023. The yearly training helps meter technicians learn more about new technologies and approved work practices. Recognizing that lineworkers are often tasked with installing meter sets, this year’s workshop will provide a back-to-basics understanding for anyone who needs to expand their knowledge about the intricacies of meter installations and why the details matter. Through classroom and hands-on training, the program will benefit the beginner, intermediate, and experienced utility lineworker, covering topics like verifying and identifying metering inaccuracies, and choosing the correct metering equipment. The workshop is planned for Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay and there will be options to attend all or part of the three-day workshop. Full details and registration info are here.
Leadership training series kicks off April 5: MEUW is launching a new approach to its professional development programs this year. The first course in the new three-part “Municipal Utility Leadership Certificate” training series focuses on why collaboration is important to being an effective utility leader. Participants will take away practical ideas they can apply to becoming more collaborative and using persuasion with their teams and co-workers. The one-day training is scheduled for Wednesday, April 5, in Mauston, and is designed for municipal workers of all skill levels and backgrounds as a foundation for developing leadership competencies. The discussion will be especially helpful for those who aspire to expanded responsibilities. Full details are available here.
Place your order for a new-edition safety manual: The American Public Power Association (APPA) has released the 17th edition of its Safety Manual, which features more than 200 changes (detailed here) and the addition of several new sections. This is the first new edition since 2017. APPA’s Safety Manual is the basis of the work practices in use at municipal utilities across the country, including in Wisconsin. It is strongly recommended that all utility line personnel and management have their own copy. As a service to member utilities, MEUW plans a bulk purchase of the updated manual for a price better than what an individual utility could get from APPA on its own. Orders should be placed through the MEUW Online Store. Manuals purchased from MEUW will be delivered to purchasing utilities during regular on-site safety training visits later this year.
As noted in the February edition of Live Lines, MEUW is partnering with E&M Consulting, Inc. to produce a Membership Directory & Resource Guide later in 2023. E&M has begun outreach to utility suppliers and others who may have an interest in advertising in the new directory. These are legitimate sales requests made on behalf of MEUW. The publication (to be available both in print and online) will help advertisers reach a wide audience of industry stakeholders and municipal electric utility employees. Companies that may wish to advertise are encouraged to contact E&M at 1-800-572-0011 or email@example.com.