Annual Membership Meeting
May 6, 2019
The 94th annual meeting of Peninsula Light Co. (PLC) was held at company headquarters on May 6, 2019.
President Signo Uddenberg established that a quorum of 12% had been met. He announced that the notice of the election and the annual meeting had been published in the Lights Newsletter, the Peninsula Gateway newspaper, and on the home page of the penlight.org website. The members present waived the reading of the notice of election and annual meeting. President Uddenberg then introduced the Board of Directors and CEO Jafar Taghavi. Jafar introduced members of the senior staff announcing their names and titles, adding they would be available after the meeting to address member concerns.
President Uddenberg stated that the agenda of the 2019 Annual Meeting would include approving last year’s Annual Meeting minutes, announcing the results of the Board election by the Secretary, and presentation of the Treasurer’s and the CEO’s reports. The floor would then be open for questions.
President Uddenberg called the meeting to order at 5:34pm. He asked if anyone wished to have last year’s minutes read aloud. There being no response, Jeff Bucholz moved and Roger Spadoni seconded to approve the minutes as follows:
RESOLVED, that the minutes of the May 7, 2018 Annual Meeting, as set forth in the document available to be read by all members attending the annual meeting, be and are hereby approved.
CEO Jafar Taghavi reviewed PLC’s history, statistics, and core purpose. He stated that PLC is the 2nd largest co-op in WA, 6th oldest co-op in USA with $60 million in revenue and $170 million in assets. PLC is a NW utility leader in technology innovation and has one of the most reliable systems in the NW. PLC assists the community by supporting local events, providing educational scholarships, donating food and money to families in need, sponsoring youth athletics, and contributing to various charitable groups and organizations on both Peninsulas. PLC is a customer satisfaction leader and continues to be a conservation innovator. PLC service territory consists of approximately 33,000 electric meters and 3,000 water meters, 8 substations, 33 circuits, and 1,000 circuit miles. PLC has 66 owned and 51 managed water systems. Canterwood Water was purchased in 2018 adding 800 new water connections.
CEO Jafar Taghavi stressed that reliability remains one of PLC’s top objectives, utilizing vegetation management, undergrounding, new technologies (e.g., tree wire, fault locators, self-healing, GIS mapping, cellular communications, and an outage management system), as well as providing outage updates using social media. PLC proves to be a service leader among electric utilities by ranking in the 1st quartile for reliability and member satisfaction again for 2018.
PLC continually reevaluates its business strategies and operations in light of changes in the business climate and an uncertain regulatory environment. Management and the Board of Directors have invested time and effort to prepare strategies that respond quickly and effectively to current and future financial challenges. PLC is committed to providing reliable and reasonably priced electrical and water services to our members. CEO Jafar Taghavi expressed that PLC will continue to manage, maintain while keeping members at the top priority.
CEO Jafar Taghavi addressed “Snowmegeddon”, the historic snow storm that hit Gig Harbor and the Key Peninsula on February 15, 2019, and the outpouring of support from PLC Members. PLC was commended for its round the clock social media coverage. CEO Jafar Taghavi read a small sampling if the hundreds of positive social media messages that were posted by PLC Members.
Secretary Junge reported that out of 31,756 ballots that were mailed for the 2019 Annual Board Election, 4,660 total ballots were returned, yielding a participation rate of 14.67%. The 12% quorum of 3,811 ballots was therefore met, validating Peninsula Light Company’s 2019 Board Election.
The ballots were tallied as follows:
Signo Uddenberg 3,425
Spence Nordfors 3,296
James Smalley 1,920
Rand Wilhelmsen 1,615
Jud Morris 1,252
Mackenzie Pinch 1,245
Therefore, Signo Uddenberg, Spence Nordfors and James Smalley have been elected to PLC’s Board of Directors for a term of three years.
This year Peninsula Light Company contracted with Survey and Ballot Systems (SBS), the leader in cooperative elections, to comply with increased regulation, continue to ensure the highest level of transparency and integrity, and provide results that are quickly verifiable and accountable. The Peninsula Light Company 2018 Board election was certified by Melissa Fiala, Quality Assurance Analyst at Survey & Ballot Systems.
Treasurer Spence Nordfors presented the total revenue from all sources, including sales of electrical energy, water sales, and revenue from our investment in wind power (the Harvest Wind project) decreased slightly from $60,000,000 in 2017, to $59,600,000 in 2018. Gross profit decreased from $32,400,000 in 2017, to $29,000,000 in 2018. Net income (total profit) decreased from $6,900,000 in 2017, to $4,100,000 in 2018. Current assets comprising plant, cash, receivables, and inventories increased from $19,000,000 in 2017 to $19,700,000 in 2018. Members’ equity increased from $119,000,000 in 2017, to $123,000,000 in 2018.
There being no unfinished business or new business, President Uddenberg asked if there were any questions from the audience.
Member Barry Pataky asked who sets the 12% voting quorum. President Uddenberg explained the Board sets the voting quorum. Barry then asked several questions regarding load shedding, demand response, time of use rates and the use of electric vehicle (EV) batteries for interim reliability. CRO Ryan Redmond explained that due to contract between PLC and Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), PLC has rate stability therefore this is not a concern for PLC service territory. CEO Jafar Taghavi explained that PLC conducts thorough studies to determine rate design. Barry also wanted to know if PLC has considered the use of auxiliary power sources within the substations. CEO Jafar Taghavi responded that due to the fact that due to the fact that PLC service territory is mostly residential this is not a concern for PLC at this time. President Uddenberg responded that should the need arise for auxiliary power sources, PLC would certainly explore that further. Barry then asked if PLC would consider lobbying with City Council to require EV charging stations be installed in new construction homes to which President Uddenberg commented that PLC tries to remain neutral on political issues. Barry’s final comment expressed concern over how PLC underground power lines would be affected by an earthquake or other large scale natural disaster. CEO Jafar Taghavi explained that both overhead and underground power lines would be affected by a natural disaster and that PLC has an emergency response plan in place.
Gina Cabiddu from Children’s Home Society expressed deep gratitude for PLC on behalf of the entire community. She wanted PLC to know how incredibly grateful the community is for Project Help and other assistance funds that PLC participates in to help over 1300 families. She appreciates how deeply imbedded in the community PLC is.
Annual attendee Craig Jimmink asked how PLC conducts its member satisfaction survey. CEO Jafar Taghavi explained that members who call PLC are tracked and survey participants are randomly selected from that list. Craig then also expressed his gratitude to PLC for excellent member service and reliability. He stated the reason there are so few members in attendance to the annual meetings is due to the fact that PLC does such a wonderful job.
President Uddenberg stated that this will be the last meeting attended by retiring Board member Jeff Bucholz. The Board presented Jeff with a plaque of appreciation and fellow Board member Nick Markovich said a few words of gratitude for Jeff’s dedication and support to the Board and PLC as a whole.
There being no further questions or comments, President Uddenberg adjourned that meeting at 6:31pm.