(HOLDREGE, Neb.) – The Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District’s board of directors received an update on negotiations involving the potential consolidation with the Dawson Public Power District at its monthly meeting on Monday.
The main topic of discussion was the configuration of the new board of directors and delineation of subdivisions. General Manager Devin Brundage reviewed a plan the joint board negotiations team helped develop that would result in a 14-member board of directors. The newly formed public power and irrigation district would have seven subdivisions; each subdivision would be represented by two board members.
Initially, the new combined board would include all 23 members consisting of each entity’s entire board of directors. Nine seats would be phased out during election years as terms in office expire until each of the seven subdivisions is represented by two board members.
Also discussed during the meeting were management and organizational structure, the financial model and facilities, including construction of new facilities in Holdrege, Bertrand and at Kingsley Dam. Discussions and negotiations are in the final phase of the four-phase consolidation study. Dawson’s board of directors received the same report at their board meeting on Oct. 5.
Next, Central and Dawson plan to hold several opportunities for the public to learn about the merger proposal and ask questions of staff. Those open houses will take place Oct. 12 in Holdrege; Oct. 13 in Lexington; Oct. 18 in North Platte; Oct. 19 in Kearney and Oct. 21 in Elwood. Times and locations will be announced in the near future. Both the Central and Dawson boards must approve the plan before it is submitted to the Nebraska Power Review Board.
Also at Monday’s meeting:
The directors approved a purchase requisition in the amount of $126,450 to CellSite Solutions of Cedar Rapids, Iowa for two buildings at the Jeffrey and J-2 Hydroplants to house microwave equipment.
The board approved a bid from L & S Electric of Rothschild, Wis., for $96,075 for a new governor pump and distributing valves at the J-2 hydroplant.
Directors closed the contract to Allen Blasting & Coating for completion of the painting and coating project at the Kingsley Dam outlet structures and approved final payment of $1.9 million.
Natural Resources and Compliance Manager Mike Drain reported the completion of inspections of dams at Jeffrey Lake, Johnson Lake and at Lake McConaughy. Engineers from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the State of Nebraska and Central conducted the inspections.
Civil engineer Tyler Thulin reported that Lake McConaughy’s elevation was at 3218.3 feet as of Monday morning (37.6% of capacity). Inflows have increased to 1,100 cubic feet per second (cfs). No water is being released from the reservoir while the Nebraska Public Power District completes work on head gates of the Keystone Canal at the east end of Lake Ogallala.
Thulin added that elevation at Jeffrey Lake was down eight feet last week to facilitate maintenance on the return gates to the Platte River below the lake.