PEC Press Release - Pedernales Electric General Manager Juan Garza has issued a report detailing PEC’s accomplishments in 2009, and he lauded the Board and the employees for helping the Cooperative meet an ambitious slate of objectives. Heading into 2010, Garza stated that it was important for him to inform PEC’s members about new measures the Cooperative has implemented while maintaining PEC’s high standards of customer service and reliability.
“Our first responsibility is always to the members, and I feel we have lived up to that responsibility in 2009,” said Garza, who noted that a comprehensive list of PEC’s accomplishments has been posted on the Cooperative Web site. “I’d like to thank the Board for its direction this year, and I’d like to thank our employees, who have proved time and time again that when you put something in front of them to do, they’re going to get it done.”
PEC took several actions that improved service and kept costs down, and Garza pointed out that most members saw their rates decrease twice in 2009. The first such change resulted from a new rate structure; the second change came from the Lower Colorado River Authority’s lowering of rates. PEC passed along those savings directly to the members. Pedernales Electric also distributed capital credit checks and developed a new debt collections policy that is designed to save the Cooperative millions each year.
PEC’s achievements in financial controls included:
• Submitting to the Board an operating budget and a capital improvement plan for 2010.
• Implementing a more comprehensive travel and business expense reimbursement policy for employees.
• Evaluating PEC’s activities supporting charitable contributions.
• Retaining an internal auditor that reports directly to the Board’s Audit Committee.
In the area of reforms for open governance, PEC:
• Continued to refine open meetings and open records policies.
• Redesigned Board committee structures and procedures to make committee meetings more open.
• Began video streaming Board meetings live over the Internet.
• Initiated a systematic bylaws reform process.
• Held member forums to seek input on issues of bylaw revisions and proposed rate structure.
To enhance operations and infrastructure, PEC:
• Contracted fiber-optic cable service for most offices and substations, increasing data throughput and bandwidth capacity.
• Planned for installation of PEC-owned fiber optic cable as part of the Smart Grid initiative.
• Contracted with the LCRA for a land mobile radio system.
To make a positive impact on member services, PEC:
• Designed and implemented a new rate structure that separates the cost of power from PEC’s costs.
• Returned duplicate membership fees to members who had paid fees for each meter in their name; members now pay a membership fee only for the first meter under their name.
• Introduced the online MyUse Energy Analyzer conservation tool.
Based on a summary of key performance indicators, the Cooperative exceeded expectations this year financially and in the categories of safety, reliability, and member service and satisfaction.
“J.D. Power now reports us in the top 5 percent in customer service in the country of all the companies that are surveyed,” said Garza. “For reliability, this number — less than one hour per meter — leads the cooperative industry and is among the leaders in the entire power industry. This is an outstanding achievement for our staff. The members of PEC have every right to be proud of the progress being made at PEC.”