On behalf of the Trico Board, thank you for attending our Annual Meeting April 7 at Casino del Sol. Almost 500 Trico Members and their families took time out of their busy schedules to learn more about their Cooperative and the chance to win one of 14 great prizes.
A highlight of the meeting was when President Nick Buckelew announced that the Board of Directors approved a special $1.5 million retirement of capital credits! This is in addition to the almost $1.7 million retired in December of 2017. Members should see the credit on their bill in June or July, depending on their billing cycle.
At the beginning of the meeting, Mr. Buckelew took a moment to honor Russ Jones, Trico’s long-time legal counsel who passed away recently.
“His knowledge and experience was a valued asset to Trico over the years and he represented us like family,” Mr. Buckelew said.
Mr. Buckelew then introduced Vince Leach, a Trico Member and state legislator, and thanked him for sponsoring and helping to pass Senate Bill 1412. The legislation preserves the ability of electric cooperatives to utilize unclaimed capital credit retirements for various beneficial programs, including youth scholarships, educational opportunities and other charitable purposes. That means the Trico Foundation will be able to continue to fund its two key programs: scholarships and the Washington Youth Tour.
Three Board of Directors were up for election – Don Black of District 1 (Marana, Dove Mountain), Brad DeSpain of District 2 (Marana, Avra Valley) and Barbara Stockwell of District 5 (Arivaca, Sasabe, Green Valley). All ran unopposed and were re-elected for another three years.
CEO and General Manager Vin Nitido discussed how Trico’s energy usage is becoming more diverse. Ten years ago, Trico’s energy mix included 75% from coal, 20% from natural gas and less than 1% from solar. Today only about one-third of our energy is generated from coal. Almost half is natural gas and more than 10% of our energy comes from solar resources.
Last year, Trico collaborated with the Arizona Electric Power Cooperative (AEPCO) and other distribution co-ops to add a 20 Megawatt (MW) community solar project near Apache Station in Willcox. This year, we’re adding 10 MW of solar, which will bring Trico’s percentage of renewable resources to 15%.
Several raffle prizes were handed out, including Trico bill credits, an iPad, NEST Thermostat, four passes to Old Tucson Studios, a one-night stay at Casino Del Sol Hotel & Resort, a $250 credit towards an energy efficient appliance and a 2002 Chevrolet truck. Roger Cowgill won a drone, courtesy of AEPCO. Ken West was the lucky winner of the truck.