Message to our owners by SWCE General Manager Syd Briggs

By Syd Briggs,
General Manager

Steele-Waseca Cooperative Electric is conducting an in-person annual meeting Tuesday, June 7, with the doors opening at 9 a.m., and the meeting starting promptly at 10:30 a.m.

The purpose of this annual meeting remains the same as any annual meeting in the past; to provide information and report on last year’s activities, and to elect three directors for a three-year term.

Steele-Waseca is providing the co-op’s audited financials in this edition of Sparks, as we do each year, and need to address these reports along with approving last year’s minutes.
This year there isn’t any preregistration or call in before the meeting. We will again be providing registration cards in the mail that are bar coded specifically for each member.

Please bring these cards with you to be scanned at registration. You should be receiving these registration cards in the mail approximately 10 days prior to the meeting. Do not mail these in; just bring them with you to the meeting on Tuesday, June 7.

The Washington, D.C. Youth Tour is returning in 2022, and we’ll be recognizing the co-op’s delegates, Alex Kindseth of Farmington and Nate Seykora of Owatonna, joining the Minnesota delegation heading out Tuesday, June 14.

Also returning this year is the great meal served by HyVee and the always popular Dairy Queen Dilly® Bars.

Financially, Steele-Waseca had another good year. Our average number of meters grew from 11,537 in 2020 to 11,668 in 2021, and we experienced a slight increase in kilowatt-hour (kWh) sales as we started getting back to normal life after complications from COVID in 2020 and it’s status impacting our annual meeting last year.

We continued to reduce operating expenses (not including the cost of power) and increased operating margins for the fourth consecutive year.

Equity increased $2 million, and long-term debt increased $5.5 million.

In addition, to the primary purpose in an annual meeting of electing the leadership for our board of directors and providing our annual reports, we will have an opportunity to introduce all employees and directors to the membership again.

For many of you, it will be another chance to reminisce with the people you have been doing business with for many years.

We will also have a chance to speak about some new ways of communicating with each other that we initiated this year. Our success depends almost entirely on communicating our status, programs, rebates, and industry issues, and we hope to keep improving providing reliable power and information that will enhance and benefit our member’s lives and their respective households.

Each member who is in attendance to present their pre-mailed registration card, or register, will receive Steele-Waseca promotional products, the $30 Power Perks to be used at local businesses, and the $50 Energy Star® gift certificate.

Personally, it will be good to see each of you again. If you have questions about our financials, the election process, or any business at all, please feel free to contact me, which I will be more than happy to address.
For the first time in three years, Steele-Waseca Cooperative Electric is conducting an in-person annual meeting, Tuesday, June 7, at our headquarters in Owatonna. Steele-Waseca has exercised the cooperative principle of “Concern for Community,” by collecting non-perishable food items and donations for a local food shelf during similar annual meetings. However, the coronavirus pandemic eliminated similar collections during the last couple of annual meetings. Member participation will start again this year. For those wishing to donate to a local food shelf at the annual meeting, they will receive (1) free LED lightbulb in appreciation of their donation.