Watts News
 Published for the members of North Itasca Electric Cooperative
VOL. 21 NO. 8  -  August 2018

CEO Report  

by Brad Dolinski, CEO

Good afternoon,

Last month we held the regular monthly meeting of North Itasca Electric Cooperative Inc. The meeting was smooth and quick. I joked with my directors that I didn’t have anything shocking for them, everything was running smooth. We parted ways after the meeting with some laughs and the feeling you get after a great meeting.

I can now say that was the calm before the storm. The next morning, we were hit with a very violent storm across much of our service territory. I must admit that I waited a little bit before I came in the next morning, I didn’t dare leave my house the way the wind and weather had blown in. On my way to the office I stopped half a dozen times to pull trees off Hwy 38 that were blocking traffic.


Heating Season is not far away  

by Jerry Loney

With the hot weather we’ve had, the heating season can be far from our minds. If you’re like me, you’ve been looking for that favorite shade tree or whatever means possible to keep cool. But also, being Minnesotans, our experience knows that the heat of summer will soon take a turn. While looking at the calendar the other day, I noticed that November is only thirteen weeks away, and us who sit in deer stands know it can be very cold.

Each year there are those who become anxious when the first cool breeze of autumn arrives, reminding them that summer has passed and winter will soon be here. Preparations have not been made, and that tune-up or new heating systems still has not been completed. Now the contractors are busy and you’re placed on a waiting list.

I believe August is a good time to remind people it’s time to think about winter before it gets here. It is also a good time to remind our members of the lower heating costs available from North Itasca Electric to provide comfort and warmth at the low cost of Storage Space Heating or the Dual Fuel programs.


From the Line Department  

by Daryl Pederson, Line Superintendent

Over the last construction year, our crews have installed roughly eight miles of new underground cable. The main projects include one mile of a three-phase line along County Road 32 feeding the Dunbar and Dixon Lake areas, one mile of three-phase line in the Turtle Lake area, and two miles of three-phase line along Jack the Horse Road.

This year’s construction season will include the completion of the new underground by Jack the Horse Lake, a new three-phase line along County Road 35 from the Pagoda Road west to County Road 36, and an additional two miles of three-phase feeding to the Clubhouse Lake area.


Roxanne’s Sales Talk  

by Roxanne Prather, member services representative

This has been quite the summer so far, it seems like once it started raining it didn’t want to stop. But this is Northern Minnesota and we must take the good with the bad.

We all love living here in the woods with all the lakes and the wildlife, there are some downfalls however that come along with that. One big downfall that comes to mind is when we have storms the damage can be a lot worse because of all the trees. When trees fall they take everything in their path, power lines & poles included. When this happens, it can leave many people out of power, sometimes for several days.

Not only do trees fall because of the wind but when we get a lot of rain like this year the ground gets so saturated that the roots just let loose sometimes.


Summer as an intern  

by Cassandra Bender

Haley and I have been working at North Itasca Electric together for about a month now. I’m so glad they hired two interns because working with Haley has been so much fun. I will for sure miss her when she goes off to college for business. We both have learned a lot about the how cooperatives work and about the business world.

The linemen work so hard and I have a lot of gratitude for them. I think it’s very important that the linemen are safe when they are working. I have two brothers who are linemen in Upper Michigan and I would be devastated if anything happened to them. So, when the power goes out, I believe it’s important to be patient with the linemen because I’d rather them take their time and be safe than for someone to get hurt. Working here has really made me realize how dangerous their job is.


August 2018 Calendar of Events 

3 Chippewa National Forest Fishing Friday at Bowstring Lake pier, Hwy 35  near Cut Foot Sioux Visitor’s Center, 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. (218) 335-3076.
3 Reception  for “Baskets from the Edge: Antler, Ash and Willow” at the Edge Gallery, 5-7 p.m.  Exhibit begins Aug. 2.  Gallery is open Thurs.-Sat., 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
3-5 White Oak Rendezvous, White Oak Fur Post just north of Deer River on Highway 6, Fri., Sat. 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.  Living history re-enactment of Voyageur and medieval eras. $5 admission, kids 10 & under free. Blackpowder shooting and knife throwing demonstrations and contests; live music, cloggers and more.
7 Mizpah City Council meets in Mizpah Community Center, 7 p.m.
8 “The Club I Never Wanted to Join” breast cancer support group meets at Grand Rapids Area Library 3:30 and 5:30 p.m. More info: Lynn Ettl, 832-3612 or lynn_ettl@msn.com
8 ISD 363 South Koochiching-Rainy River School Board Meeting, 7 p.m. Northome ITV studio.
8 Bigfork Lions Club meets second Wednesday, 6 p.m. at Golf on the Edge.
10-12 Koochiching County Fair at the fairgrounds on Hwy 71 in Northome.  Theme: “Best Weekend Ever.”