MEUW Weekly :: June 20, 2023

95th Anniversary celebration of Public Power — your input needed: MEUW’s 95th Anniversary is the perfect opportunity to celebrate the critical and important services municipal utilities provide throughout Wisconsin! We will be hosting a Public Power on Parade event in Madison to showcase the public power utilities from across the state, as well as a pre-event trade show featuring utility suppliers.

We want to make sure the celebration provides members a great day that’s easy and fun to participate in. Additional details will follow, but your input is needed now for planning purposes.

Please fill out this brief survey to indicate your interest in bus transport for this event.

Also, as mentioned in the June Live Lines, don’t forget to cast your vote for your favorite logomark (graphic) for the event! Voting is open through June 23.

Grant webinar July 13: MEUW has arranged for Power System Engineering (PSE) to conduct a webinar to review federal grant opportunities your municipal utility could tap into for various projects. Held at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, July 13, the discussion will cover the latest grant opportunities that can provide utilities with access to no- or low-cost financing for electrical infrastructure and renewable energy projects, and explain the grant programs and how you can maximize the benefits. There is no cost to attend. Registration is NOT required. Meeting details can be found here.

Learn to Lead with Consistency: As part of MEUW’s professional development programming, we’re offering a one-day leadership development course that focuses on why consistency is essential to being an effective utility leader. Held on Wednesday, Aug. 2, at the Lodge at Mauston, participants will learn practical tactics they can apply to become a consistent leader and learn how consistency can help to inspire people to work toward a common goal. Click here for more information and registration information.

Help us plan a great event for our members: We’re looking for a handful of creative people interested in helping to plan the celebration of public power during the MEUW 95th Anniversary event. If you like to plan celebrations, are willing to share your ideas, and are good at thinking through details, join the 95th Anniversary Working Committee! Email to express your interest.

The June issue of Live Lines was distributed on June 6. In case you missed it, you can find it online here.

Legislation introduced to increase worker safety: Last session, the Wisconsin State legislature passed 2021 WI Act 255 which allowed a county or municipal highway vehicle to use green-colored lamps, expanding on their existing statutory requirement of amber. Green lights have been shown to be more visible in inclement weather conditions than amber, providing an added measure of safety to vehicles operating in potentially hazardous conditions.

In order to provide greater safety options to utility workers, LRB 1745 is being introduced, building on WI Act 255, to allow utility vehicles to utilize amber or green lights when marking their vehicles while restoring utility services or repairing damaged infrastructure, ensuring that these lights will remain focused on visibility during dangerous situations. This bill does not mandate that all vehicles make this switch, but rather provides greater flexibility for utility vehicles looking to keep their workers safe.

MEUW has been championing this effort to increase our members’ safety. The legislation also has the support of the Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association, Customers First Coalition, and the Wisconsin Utilities Association.

Summer storms season means being prepared for mutual aid assistance: As a reminder, one call to MEUW’s Mutual Aid Hotline — 1-844-MEUW-911 —triggers an immediate response to organize resources and support a member utility’s recovery.

Save the date for annual Accounting and Customer Service Seminar: MEUW’s annual gathering of municipal electric utility personnel involved in accounting, customer service, and utility billing is planned for Wednesday, Sept. 20, at the Lodge At Mauston.

A portion of the seminar agenda will be dedicated to “member showcase” discussions to allow utility attendees to share insights about their accounting, rates, billing, or customer service practices and successes. Each showcase discussion will be limited to 15 minutes, and each utility chosen to share will be offered a 50% discount toward one seminar registration fee. To be considered, please complete the “call for presenters” form here by noon on July 29.

MEUW Weekly remains on a summer schedule: A reminder that MEUW is on a summer schedule for distributing our e-newsletter. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, MEUW Weekly will be sent only once per month (on the third Tuesdays of June, July, and August). MEUW’s monthly newsletter, Live Lines, will continue to be published on the first Tuesday of every month. Look for the next edition of MEUW Weekly in your inbox on Tuesday, July 18.