Manager’s Message – April 2022
The cooperative board and staff are watching the power and fuel markets in California this spring. Prices are up for power and natural gas, and that impacts our wholesale power costs. Plumas-Sierra Rural Electric Cooperative (PSREC) gets up to 50% of our power from hydropower, and the ongoing drought is forcing us to buy replacement power while still paying for the missing hydropower.
We are reviewing the needs for rate adjustments for 2022 and 2023. As always, we will let the membership know if any rate increase is proposed.
Lineworker Appreciation Month
April is Lineworker Appreciation Month. Plumas-Sierra Rural Electric Cooperative lineworkers are responsible for keeping power flowing day and night, regardless of holidays, vacations, birthdays, weddings or other important family milestones.
Beyond the years of specialized training and apprenticeships, it takes internal fortitude and a mission-oriented outlook to be a good lineworker.
In PSREC’s service territory and across the country, electric co-op lineworkers’ mindset of helping others often extends beyond their commitment to their work and into their communities.
Given the dedication of PSREC’s lineworkers both on and off the job, I encourage you to take a moment to acknowledge the many contributions they make to our local community. In the past two years, we have dealt with four massive wildfires. Even though the fires burned under our transmission lines, we were able to keep the power on with few interruptions.
The outage on March 7 was caused by damage done to our main fiber line by a non-cooperative organization in the Lemon Valley area. We are working on long-term fixes to outages like this. There are several projects underway, and we will share information about them as we get confirmation that they are started.
We have received additional grants to offer fiber optic service to a variety of areas, including Elysian Valley, parts of Doyle, Johnstonville, eastern Sierra Valley, C-Road/Mohawk Vista, parts of Cromberg/Spring Garden, and Old Truckee Road in Sierraville.
If you are looking for service or wondering if you should make a long-term commitment with another provider, please check with us first. We hear again and again that if people knew our services were about to arrive, they wouldn’t have signed a different provider’s long-term contract.
Plumas-Sierra Telecommunications’ fiber optic services offer speeds up to 1 gigabyte per second. Our coax service offers speeds up to 25 megabytes a second, and our wireless broadband service offers download speeds of up to 20 Mbps. With these speeds, you can stream videos on multiple devices at the same time without slowing down. You could even replace your TV provider with streaming services.
We continue to expand broadband coverage throughout the region. If you haven’t already done so, get on our interest list or sign up for service by calling us at (530) 832-4261 or visiting Our Website.
As the weather improves, we will begin our right-of-way work, including clearing poles, trimming trees, and removing trees that threaten our rights-of-way and our communities. Your help is greatly appreciated with this crucial ongoing project.
Our members have helped identify trees that have turned color or are clearly damaged. This is a big help—sometimes trees die and turn color after we’ve inspected them for the year.
Another way to help is cooperating with us when we need to remove trees. We don’t cut trees unnecessarily because it is a big expense to the cooperative. If a tree is a hazard tree, we are legally required to remove it. When members cooperate with us on tree removal, it reduces our costs—which helps keep rates down—and keeps us all safe. Given California’s strict liability standard, PSREC must remove all identified hazard trees off our lines.
We had a few key retirements recently. Paul Erwin, our longest serving lineman, and Corby Erwin, our member and energy services manager, have retired. Also retiring is Teri Ward, one of our customer service representatives, and Charlie Sculio, our co-generation plant manager. We wish all of them well and we appreciate all their hard work through the years!
Between our grants and retirements, we have been hiring. If you know someone interested in working for PSREC and PST, the best way is to watch the website on our Employment page.