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Trico Awards $35,000 in POWER Grants to Local Nonprofits

In June, five non-profit organizations received a total of $35,000 in grants from the Trico Electric Charitable Trust, which is funded through Operation Round Up. The grants are part of Trico’s POWER Grants program and are awarded twice a year to charities throughout southern Arizona.

Receiving grants of $9,000 each were the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona (Amado) and Sahuarita Food Bank & Community Resource Center. Receiving a grant of $8,000 was Borderlands Produce Rescue. Arivaca Fire District Auxiliary received a $7,000 grant. Receiving a $2,000 grant was Mt. Lemmon Firefighters Foundation.

“We’re grateful to receive a Trico POWER Grant to be given to the Arivaca Fire District to purchase new fire hoses. With this grant, we will have enough hose to be able to work a fire and then put the trucks back in service immediately,” said Fire Chief Tangye Beckham.

Since 2008, the POWER Grant program has awarded $805,000 in grants. Learn more a

“As a cooperative, Trico is dedicated to serving its Members and our community. We have been a part of these communities for over 75 years, and our POWER Grants program is one of the many ways we help to make a positive difference,” said Brian Heithoff, Trico CEO/General Manager.

The Trico Electric Charitable Trust is funded through Operation Round Up (ORU), a program that allows Members to round up their electric bill to the next whole dollar. Those extra cents are used to assist community organizations, schools, veteran’s groups, first responders, and food banks. For more information, visit

Trico helps bring power to the Navajo Nation

Concern for Community and Cooperation Among Cooperatives are two of seven principles that cooperatives like Trico pursue. In June, Trico employees Bryan English, Joe Tsethlikai, Tyler Hornung and Conor Garcia spent a week in Chinle, Ariz. – near Canyon de Chelly National Monument – to bring power to the community as part of the Light Up Navajo program.

Trico is the first cooperative in the state of Arizona to participate in the mutual-aid program that began in 2019 to extend electricity to homes without power. According to the American Public Power Association, of the approximately 55,000 homes on the Navajo Nation, nearly 14,000 still do not have electricity. They represent 75% of all U.S. households without power.

Tsethlikai, who is a descendant of the Zuni people, said it is unthinkable that in 2023 there are people in the United States without electricity.

“Being half-native, I’m glad I got the opportunity to help them,” he said. “They need all the help they can get. It’s going to be a long process. At the rate they’re going, it will take 30 years for everyone to get power. Until they have electricity, they don’t have access to basic necessities that we take for granted, such as water, ice to keep their food cold, telephones, internet, or indoor plumbing.”

The working conditions in Chinle weren’t great. The temperature was in the 90s. The wind was 40-50 miles per hour. The elevation is around 7,000 feet.

“It was a wonderful experience,” said Tsethlikai, a Journeyman Lineman at Trico for 16 years. “It was a lot of work, but it was rewarding. After meeting the people and seeing what a life-changing experience it is for them, it was all worth it. It was an eye opener for me. My family on the (Zuni) reservation has electricity and water. It was sad, but I was happy to be there. I don’t look at it as charity. It’s the right thing to do.”

It was a great learning experience for Hornung and Garcia, who are apprentice linemen. All four men said they wished they could have done more. During their week in Chinle, they installed four meters. There was also a crew from Alabama working in another part of town.

“I hope more utilities continue to help,” said English, who has been a Journeyman Lineman at Trico for eight years. “It was a good experience. I wish we could have done more. Maybe next year we can stay longer.”

New Electric Vehicle Time-of-Use Rate

Trico is proud to offer a new voluntary Electric Vehicle Time-of-Use Rate (EV TOU Rate) for eligible Trico Members who own electric vehicles (EVs). This rate is designed to help meet the growing demand for EVs among Trico Members, reduce strain on the system during peak hours, and lower costs for Trico’s overall membership.

Trico Members who sign up for the EV TOU Rate will receive a 45 percent rate reduction when charging their EVs between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. up to 400 kWh of energy. This experimental rate is available to the first 1,000 Trico Members who sign up. By offering this rate, Trico will be better able to understand Members’ EV usage and determine how many EVs are in Trico’s service area. This information will then help develop future EV programs at Trico as we work to better serve EV demand and Members’ needs.

As a not-for-profit cooperative, Trico’s focus is on meeting the needs of all Members and putting Members’ interests first. By encouraging Members with EVs to charge during non-peak hours when energy supplies are high and costs are low, Trico can control costs and efficiently use the entire system, which benefits all Members, even those who do not own EVs.

“EVs offer a significant opportunity for electric cooperatives, and Trico has been planning for an increase in EV adoption. Trico is committed to providing its Members with sustainable and cost-effective energy solutions, and that means our EV strategy starts with our Members,” said Brian Heithoff, Trico CEO and General Manager.

To learn more about the EV TOU Rate and for additional EV information, visit

CEO Column: Monsoon storm safety

Last month, I talked about monsoon storms and how Trico works year-round to ensure you continue receiving reliable power. As the monsoon season rolls in with its powerful storms and heavy rains, it’s essential to prioritize safety and be prepared for potential hazards.

Our safety motto at Trico is Safety Matters and Concern for Community is a principle we live by every day. Trico has an employee Safety Committee that meets every month to discuss safety topics and develop programs to help protect employees, our Members, and the communities we serve. This month the Safety Committee suggested that we remind Members of the dangers of downed power lines and provide storm safety advice to help our Members and their families avoid risks.

To ensure your well-being and that of others, it is crucial to understand the dangers associated with downed power lines and learn how to avoid them.

Here are some essential tips to stay safe during monsoon storms and protect yourself from downed power lines.

  • Make sure to fully charge all cellphones, laptops and devices so you have maximum power in the event of a power outage. Set aside basic household items you will need, including flashlights, batteries, a manual can opener and portable, battery-powered radio or TV.
  • In the event of an outage, turn off appliances, TVs, computers and other sensitive electronics. This will help avert damage from a power surge and will also help prevent overloading the circuits during power restoration. Keep one light on so you will know when power is restored.
  • During thunderstorms, avoid electrical equipment and land-based telephones. Keep away from windows.
  • After the storm, avoid downed power lines and walking through flooded areas where power lines could be submerged. Power lines could be submerged and still live with electricity. Report any downed lines you see to Trico by calling 520-744-2944 immediately. Allow ample room for our crews to safely perform their jobs – including on your property.

Stay informed by signing up for Trico’s Outage Notifications through our SmartHub app or on our website at You can report an outage from SmartHub or by texting “OUT” to 855-937-1858.