February 2017
One More!
By Executive Director Dave White
 
Football analogies may be cliché, but there is little doubt that lessons can be learned from the New England Patriots' victory in Super Bowl LI. Behind 28-3 in the third quarter it seemed as if the Atlanta Falcons were destined to win the game. And yet, through determination and teamwork, the Patriots put together the greatest comeback in Super Bowl history.     More 
   
Credit and Collections Roundtable

With special guests Karla Doukas and Chris Pollart of Rubin and Rudman LLC, Attorneys at Law


PUMP up your skills this spring in Vermont

The spring Public Utility Management Program is set for March 29-31 at Topnotch Resort in Stowe, Vt. Registration deadline is February 28.
 
PUMP is a unique two-part program, held each spring and fall, aimed at current and rising utility managers, business managers, customer service leaders, and commissioners. Participants have a unique opportunity to meet and work with colleagues from around the region as they update their skills and knowledge in an intense, interactive, and enjoyable setting.
 
The upcoming session includes top industry experts who will lead discussions on a variety of utility topics from customer interactions to power supply and project billing. The group will also learn about Stowe, Vt.'s community solar and EV charging projects.



Engineering and Operations Conference & Expo

May 10-11
DCU Center, Worcester, MA

 

Customer Service Leadership program comes to Conn.

NEPPA's Customer Service Leadership program is coming to Connecticut this spring when Norwich Public Utilities will host it.
 
The two-day certificate program will be held May 17-18 at NPU's Customer Service Center, 173 North Main St. Cost is $450 for NEPPA members; $675 for non-members.
 
Created for public power professionals and led by popular instructor Rockie Blunt, the program focuses on the knowledge and techniques needed to serve customers confidently and professionally with topics such as:
 
* Customer expectations
* Assertiveness and professional language
* Nonverbal communication
* Unexpected situations and negative news
* Complaints and intense situations
* Different personalities and generations

Customer Service pros, office & business managers:
This is your event!
Our 2017 Customer Service Conference will happen June 7 at the Babson College Executive Conference Center, Wellesley, Mass.
 
Join your public power colleagues from throughout New England to share ideas and innovations at this daylong event. The program is designed for all customer service professionals, including office managers and business managers.
 
This year's program features three top speakers presenting four separate topics:  The Key Accounts Roadmap to Success, The Whole Package Professional, Lead without Speaking -- The Importance of Nonverbal Communication, and De-Escalation in the Customer Service Arena.

Cost is $175, including lunch. Register now. Find more program details here.
 
Retirement, promotions at Lyndonville, Vt. utility


Ken Mason
Ken Mason, longtime head of the Village of Lyndonville, Vt. Electric Department, has retired after 40 years of service to the utility, including some 38 years as General Manager.
 
Bill Humphrey, Operations Manager at the utility for 17 years, has been promoted to General Manager. Jason Lefebvre now fills Humphrey's former position.
 
Ken, who was honored with a 2016 NEPPA Distinguished Service Award, is spending his time travelling and relaxing, according to Bill.

Walter McGrath retires from Hometown Connections

Walter McGrath has retired from his position as the New England Representative on the staff of Hometown Connections , the utility services subsidiary of the American Public Power Association (APPA).
 
McGrath, who served as General Manager of the Braintree, Mass. Electric Light Department from 1985 to 2002, represented Hometown Connections since 2003.
 
"Walter is one of public power's unsung heroes who has dedicated his professional career to supporting the APPA membership," said Tim Blodgett, President & CEO, Hometown Connections. "Much of the success of Hometown is due directly to Walter."
 
In recognition of his contributions to the company, Hometown Connections created the annual Walter R. McGrath Executive Consultant of the Year Award, and he was its first recipient in August 2016.
Cox Industries gets 2017 wood pole contract

The Holyoke, Mass. Gas & Electric Department, on behalf of all NEPPA members, has awarded the 2017 wood pole bid to Cox Industries, the same vendor as the last two years.
 
The award is effective immediately and runs through the 2017 calendar year. To purchase poles, utilities can call Gary Dudek at 803-492-7728 (office) or 803-535-9202 (cell), or email gdudek@coxwood.com . Please reference NEPPA contract #16-31.
 
For questions, contact Holyoke G&E's Purchasing Coordinator Yocelyn Delgado at 413-536-9308 or email ydelgado@hged.com .

Energy New England changes name to ENE
Energy New England recently changed its name to ENE, introduced a new logo, and launched a new website at ene.org. "For years our customers have k nown us as ENE," said President and CEO  John G. Tzimorangas about making the  name change official.

A provider of wholesale and retail energy services, ENE works with utilities, independent power producers, industrial, commercial and institutional facilities, municipalities and nonprofits.
Upcoming APPA educational webinars  
 
The American Public Power Association offers educational webinars that you and/or your staff can access through any computer. Upcoming subjects range from industry issues and challenges for public power governing boards, to Electric Utility 101 discussions on generation and substations. NEPPA members get the APPA discounted price with coupon code NEPPA. Details are here.

 In The News

In the Communities

Dave Schofield, center, General Manager of the Georgetown, Mass. Municipal Light Department, visits the local senior center to talk about the utility, safety matters, and energy efficiency.

 New Members

Welcome to the law firm of Doucette & LaRose, LLC, a new NEPPA Associate member with extensive experience working with municipal utilities. Contact Attorney Stephen Doucette at 508-987-9944 or steve@dandllaw.com. For more information visit dandllaw.com. Stephen Doucette is also a speaker at NEPPA's upcoming PUMP program in Stowe, Vt.
 
Holland Power Services is now a NEPPA Associate member, providing a wide range of power services to utilities, industries, and wind farms, including installation, testing, and maintenance/repair. An industry leader in emergency storm restoration, HPS routinely provides support and assistance throughout the northeast. Contact Jim Salmon at 518-527-8594 or jsalmon@hollandpowerservices.com . For more information visit hollandpowerservices.com.
 
Wise Safety & Environmental , a distributor of safety-industrial supplies, has joined NEPPA as an Associate member. Its products include safety, health, abatement, environmental, instruments, fire, police, and domestic emergency preparedness supplies and services. Contact Kevin Noel at 978-557-9070 or   k.noel@wisesafetyenv.com . For more information visit wisesafetyenv.com.


 Upcoming Events


 Training and Education

Substation I   3/28-31, 4/25-28, 5/23-26, 6/27-30
 
Substation II  9/19-22, 10/21-27, 11/14-17; 12/19 -22

Metering I   3/27, 4/24, 5/22, 6/26
 
Metering II   8/14, 8/28, 9/18, 10/2, 10/23, 11/13, 12/4, 12/18

Legislative Update