This is a press release submitted to the Las Vegas Sun. It has not been verified or edited by the Sun.
NREA builds political bonds at annual meeting
Published on Mon, Sep 30, 2013 (9:07 a.m.)Political dialogue highlighted the Nevada Rural Electric Association’s annual meeting held in Las Vegas on Thursday and Friday.
Two state officials spoke to the NREA delegation, consisting largely of CEOs and board members from Nevada’s public power companies, and representatives from all six federal officials were also in attendance. The event was part of a continued effort by the NREA to work closely with elected officials and educate them about issues important to providing affordable, reliable electricity to rural Nevadans.
“We’re a political organization,” said Randy Ewell, the president of NREA’s board of directors and the CEO at Mt. Wheeler Power. “When we go to Carson City, that’s who we work with.”
State Senator Pete Goicoechea and state assemblyman James Oscarson started the first session by discussing issues facing rural Nevadans. Goicoechea shared his views on the sage grouse issue and talked about the task force he helped initiate that will research returning federal land to state control. Oscarson shared stories from his time involved with NREA’s Youth Energy Seminar.
That was followed by a panel discussion featuring the federal representatives. Topics ranged from sage grouse to federal land control to renewable energy standards.
Brian Cavey, the vice president of legislative affairs for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, finished the evening by discussing the national political climate that impacts electric cooperatives nationwide.
"The great thing about this meeting was hearing a commitment from all of our state and federal representatives to work together in support of the mission of Nevada's public power association," said event coordinator Hank James. “This was a very worthwhile event proving the refreshing value of a cooperative spirit."
Formed in 1974, the NREA represents the public power entities that supply electricity to a large part of Nevada’s geography. The organization protects its members’ interests by serving as a unified voice to Nevada legislators. For more information, please visit www.NREA.coop.