All posts by Melissa Carlin

Power Pledge Challenge Kicks Off October Energy Awareness Month

September 22, 2017 –  Over 2,000 students will learn about energy efficiency next month and compete for prizes statewide as part of the Power Pledge Challenge. Utilities and organizations from Mat-Su, Anchorage, Kenai Peninsula, and Juneau host the challenge as part of Energy Awareness Month, recognized every year in October. In the challenge, students complete a hands-on activity from the AK EnergySmart curriculum; learn how to calculate their energy usage, and ways to reduce their usage at home. They then conduct an online home energy audit with their families and identify specific actions they will take to use energy more efficiently.

Over the past five years, this challenge has grown from 700 students in Anchorage to more than 2,200 throughout the state competing for regional and statewide prizes. Last year’s statewide prize winning teacher, Mayme Troutman from Wasilla Middle School, said, “It’s important for students to be aware of the concept of energy and how it affects them. In 8th grade physical science the students take a deeper look at how energy is changed, transferred and the monetary/environmental impacts energy has on everybody.”

Each region will award one class with a pizza party with a special guest and/or power plant tour. The statewide “grand” prize is a pizza party and $1,200 worth of energy-related classroom supplies.
There are still spots available for teachers to sign up in all four regions.

The dates for presentations are below:

Mat-Su/Eagle River: September 18th – 29th; 8th grade science classes
Homer/Kenai: October 2nd – 13th; 6th and 7th grade science classes
Juneau: October 9th – 20th; 6th grade science classes
Anchorage: October 9th – 20th; 7th grade science classes

The Power Pledge Challenge is held through support of Alaska Energy Light & Power, Alaska Energy Authority, Alaska Housing Finance Corporation, Chugach Electric Association, ENSTAR Natural Gas Co., Homer Electric Association, Matanuska Electric Association, Municipal Light and Power, and Renewable Energy Alaska Project.

Scattered Power Outages on August 29

August 30, 2017 – Homer Electric Association, Inc., (HEA) experienced multiple power outages due to high winds in the Soldotna/Nikiski/Sterling areas on Tuesday, August 29, 2017.
The first outage came in around 9:44 AM with 25 members reporting no power in the Nikiski area. HEA responded to a downed power line along Island Lake Road and Village Avenue. The crew completed repairs at 12:47 PM.

The second outage came in at 10:54 AM. This outage left 712 members without power in the Scout Lake Loop and Funny River areas of Sterling/Soldotna. The crew found another power line down due to a fallen tree. The crew was initially able to restore power to 350 members at 12:54 PM and then proceeded to make repairs to the downed line. The remaining 362 member’s power was back on at 3:31 PM.

The third outage occurred at Mile 106 of the Sterling Highway at 11:30 AM leaving 11 members without power. The cause of the outage was another tree on the lines. The crew completed repairs by 1:40 PM and restored power to all members.

The fourth outage at 12:16 PM at Forelands and Kenai Spur Highway was a downed power line caused by a tree falling through the line. Seven members saw their power restored by 2:22 PM.

Please remember to stay away from downed power lines as this can result in serious injury or even death. Call 911 or HEA if you come across a fallen power line. DO NOT attempt to get out of your car if the line is in the road or lands on your car.

Maintenance Work Continues from Anchor Point to Happy Valley

August 30, 2017 – Homer Electric crews will continue working on a maintenance project from Anchor Point north to Happy Valley throughout the month of September.

The crews will be installing new fuses along the power line that will improve the reliability of electric service.
The work may require a brief power outage in the area the crew is at on a particular day.

If an outage is required, the outage will be isolated to the location the crew is working and may last up to 10 minutes and no longer than an hour. No HEA member will see more than one outage related to the maintenance work.
If you have questions or need

HEA Anticipates Rate Change for 3rd Quarter 2017

June 9, 2017 – Homer Electric Association (HEA) members will likely see a rate increase effective July 1, 2017.

HEA has submitted a filing with the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) that increases the Cost of Power Adjustment (COPA) from $0.06865 per kilowatt-hour to $0.07205 per kilowatt-hour.

COPA reflects the cost of the fuel purchased by HEA to generate electricity and is adjusted on a quarterly basis.

The new rate will mean an increase of $1.87 per month for the average HEA residential member using 550-kilowatt hours a month.

Pending approval from the Regulatory Commission of Alaska, the rate change will be effective July 1, 2017.

HEA Crews Respond to Funny River Outage

May 25, 2017 – Homer Electric Association, Inc. responded to an outage in the Scout Lake/Funny River areas in Soldotna at around 6:14 AM this morning.

There were 708 members without power. HEA was able to restore power to 348 members in the Scout Lake area at 8:51 AM. Power was restored to the remaining 360 members in the Funny River area at 11:06 AM. The cause of the outage was a tree had fallen through the power lines, breaking the line.

Capital Credit Allocation Notice on June Statement

May 10, 2017 – Homer Electric members will be receiving capital credit allocation notices on their June statement. This notice is to inform members of their equity accrued in HEA for the year 2016.

The patronage capital credits will be reflected on your statement as “Notice of Capital Credit Allocation.” This represents your share of the margins realized by your Cooperative for the year 2016. These margins are allocated to all member-owners based upon the total dollar amount purchased for electric energy in 2016.

Capital credits shown on the June statements cannot be applied to electric bills or toward payment for other HEA services. This is not a refund. The decision to refund capital credits rests solely with the HEA Board of Directors and is dependent on the financial situation of the Cooperative and the provisions of its By-Laws. Should you discontinue service with HEA and/or change current mailing address, please notify HEA of the new address as there may be future correspondence relative to the final disposition of these capital credits.

For more information on capital credits, go to http://www.homerelectric.com/my-benefits/

HEA Schedules Summer Project to Improve Reliability

May 1, 2017 –  Homer Electric will be working in Homer this summer on a project that will improve the reliability and extend the life of underground cable.

Homer Electric’s underground electrical cables are aging, which means that their protective insulation is beginning to deteriorate. This can cause cracks, which can lead to unplanned power outages.  Homer Electric is working with a company called Novinium to repair the cables using a silicone injection process. The silicone fills the cracks in the cables and extends their useful life up to 40 years.

The cable injection work will take place in Homer neighborhoods in the West Hill/Diamond Ridge/Skyline areas this spring and summer.  The work will require intermittent power outages for HEA members in these areas where the injection is taking place. The number of power interruptions will be kept to a minimum and every effort will be made to limit the duration of the outages.

HEA will provide advance notice to affected neighborhoods prior to the start of the work.

For questions regarding the project, please contact HEA Engineering Services Supervisor Dale Marsengill at 235-3353 in Homer.

HEA Casts AEEC Deregulation Vote

December 21, 2016 – Homer Electric Association, Inc. (HEA) announces that on December 21, 2016, it cast its single vote not to deregulate its subsidiary, Alaska Electric and Energy Cooperative (AEEC) from the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA).

Upon confirmation that the HEA membership voted against deregulation from the RCA and the vote had been certified by the RCA, HEA echoed the wishes of its members and voted NO to deregulating the AEEC from the RCA.

Because of the rules governing a deregulation election, a separate election was required for HEA’s subsidiary, AEEC, with HEA voting as the only member of the subsidiary.

HEA Deregulation Vote Results

December 20, 2016 – Homer Electric Association, Inc. (HEA) announces December 20, 2016, the membership has voted against deregulation from the Regulatory Commission of Alaska.

A total of 6,894 votes were received and certified. The final count was 2,041 yes votes and 4,853 no votes.

The HEA Board of Directors would like to thank each and every one of the members for voting on this important matter. Almost one third of the membership voted which highlights one of the values of the cooperative model, enabling members to provide direction to their utility.

HEA Anticipates Slight Rate Increase in January 2017

December 5, 2016 – Homer Electric Association (HEA) members could see a slight increase in their monthly bills beginning January 5, 2017, if two filings with the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) are approved.

In the first filing, made on November 23, 2016 as a result of the rate case originally filed in late 2015, HEA proposes an increase to both the residential and general service monthly customer charges from $15.49 to $20.00. It also proposes to decrease the residential service energy rate from the current interim rate of $0.15366 to $0.14866 and the general service energy rate from $0.15497 to $0.15473 per kilowatt hour.

This filing also changes the interim large general service rates. The energy rate decreases from $0.10394 to $0.09723 per kilowatt hour, the customer charge decreases from $51.63 to $50.00 and the demand charge increases from $17.23 to $20.00 per kilowatt.

In the second filing, HEA proposes a decrease to the Cost of Power Adjustment (COPA) rate from $0.07614 to $0.07373 per kilowatt hour. The COPA is adjusted on a quarterly basis and primarily reflects the cost of natural gas used to generate power for HEA members.

Overall, the proposed changes would decrease the blended residential rate (energy rate plus COPA) from $0.22980 to $0.22239 per kilowatt hour.

The combined proposed rate changes will result in an increase of 43 cents in the monthly bill for the average residential HEA member using 550 kilowatt hours.

If approved by the Regulatory Commission of Alaska, both changes will be effective on January 5, 2017.