This blog series covers the monthly La Plata Electric Association (LPEA) Board of Directors meetings. We’re tracking the board for transparency and accountability, as well as to stay current on their renewable energy initiatives. Find past and future spotlights here.

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A New Board

The election is over, and we have a new LPEA Board of Directors! Welcome back to incumbents Dan Huntington and Jack Turner, and congratulations to LPEA’s newest Directors, Joe Lewandowski and Holly Metzler. We look forward to working with you!

LPEA Board Leadership:

  • President:Bob Lynch (District 1)
  • Vice President: Britt Bassett (District 3)
  • Secretary: Guinn Unger (District 4)
  • Treasurer: Tim Wheeler (District 4)
  • Round Up Board: Joe Lewandowski (District 3) and Holly Metzler (District 1)
  • Tri-State Board: Kirsten Skeehan (District 1)
  • CREA Board: Jack Turner (District 4)
  • Western United Board: Kohler McInnis (District 2)
  • 4CORE Board: Rachel Landis (District 3)

More change will come to the co-op this summer, when LPEA welcomes their new CEO. Jessica Matlock will start at the end of July, replacing current CEO Mike Dreyspring. A Colorado native, Matlock brings decades of experience working with public utilities and energy policy. We are excited to see how her extensive background working with both governmental agencies and electric utilities will help navigate the road ahead to cleaner, more affordable energy.

A Push from the Legislature 

The Colorado Legislative Session adjourned on May 3rd after passing a flurry of energy bills that will propel Colorado towards a responsible energy future. Some of the more notable bills passed are:

  • HB 1261: Sets statewide goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and directs the Air Quality Control Commission (AQCC) to implement policies and rules to reduce pollution.
  • HB 1314: Creates a Just Transition Office to ensure that workers are looked after during the transition from coal to renewable energy
  • SB 096:  Requires greenhouse gas-emitting entities to publicly report their emissions
  • SB 236:  One of the more overlooked bills of the session, the Sunset PUC bill directs the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to consider the environmental and social cost of carbon when it analyzes utility future utility projects
  • SB 181:  Reforms oil and gas production by giving more local control to cities and counties over drilling, setting in methane rules in motion, and changing the makeup of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission

So, now what?

Things are changing fast in the world of electricity generation, both at the state and local level, and we have an opportunity to move Southwest Colorado rapidly toward renewable, affordable electricity.

At LPEA, we have a strong forward-thinking majority and an incoming CEO that will help navigate the shifts in the energy industry to keep our power safe, affordable, and reliable.

The Board and staff are moving forward with the recommendations given by the Power Supply Committee last April and continuing to investigate LPEA’s options.

Statewide, new bills passed during the legislative session will drive the implementation of emissions-reduction policies and ensure that progress towards a clean, healthy energy future continues to be made.

As member owners, we must stay engaged and remind Directors at every opportunity that we still expect them to do everything in their power to work for a brighter, cleaner future here in Southwest Colorado. Keep up all the good work- real change is on the horizon.

UPCOMING MEETINGS:

LPEA Board Meeting: Wednesday June 19th at LPEA Headquarters. Public comment is at 9am.

Call or email your LPEA Board Directors.

(Hover over your neighborhood for contact information!)

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