Broadband Accessibility Act Passes Tennessee General Assembly

EMBARGOED UNTIL HOUSE VOTE

Broadband Accessibility Act Passes Tennessee General Assembly

NASHVILLE – The Tennessee House of Representatives tonight passed the Broadband Accessibility Act (H.B. 0529) on [a X to X/unanimous vote]. The legislation now moves to Gov. Bill Haslam for his signature.

“Access to high-speed internet has the potential to shape the future of rural Tennessee,” says David Callis, executive vice president and general manager of the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “Gov. Haslam, Sen. Mark Norris and Rep. David Hawk have been tireless advocates for this legislation. We appreciate them and everyone who showed their support for the Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act and the people of rural Tennessee.”

The Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act removes restrictions that currently prevent electric cooperatives from providing retail internet access. More than 800,000 Tennesseans, many of whom live in areas served by electric co-ops, do not have access to high-speed internet.

The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association provides leadership, advocacy and support for Tennessee’s 23 electric cooperatives and publishes The Tennessee Magazine, the state’s most widely circulated periodical. Visit tnelectric.org or tnmagazine.org to learn more.

 

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FOR MORE INFORMATION

Trent Scott | Vice President of Strategy | 615.515.5534 | tscott@tnelectric.org

Tennessee Co-ops Support Reversal of Clean Power Plan

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tennessee Co-ops Support Reversal of Clean Power Plan

NASHVILLE – Today the Trump administration issued an executive order instructing the Environmental Protection Agency to begin dismantling the Clean Power Plan. David Callis, executive vice president and general manager of the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association issued the following statement:

“Lifting the regulatory mandates required by the Clean Power Plan allows electric cooperatives to investment in projects that make sense for their members. Cooperatives believe that low rates and reliable power must be a part of America’s clean energy future.

Innovation, not government regulations, provides the most direct path to reduced carbon emissions, and we are proud of the accomplishments that have been made in our state.

Tennessee co-ops are leading the way in developing carbon-free energy. In recent years, co-ops have built more than 2.5 megawatts of solar generation. These community solar projects allow co-op members to purchase or subscribe to renewable generation without the significant capital investment required for roof-top installations.

We also applaud TVA for their investments in clean generation. TVA is forecast to reduce their system CO2 rate by 60 percent by 2020. The primary impacts of the Clean Power Plan would have been minimal for Tennessee, thanks in large part to TVA’s diverse power generation mix.

In October of 2015, the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and 39 generation and transmission cooperatives petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals to review and reject the CPP. That effort laid the groundwork for a stay by the Supreme Court, giving the current administration time to review the rule and issue today’s executive order.

The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association provides legislative and communication support for Tennessee’s 23 electric cooperatives and publishes The Tennessee Magazine, the state’s most widely circulated periodical. Visit tnelectric.org or tnmagazine.org to learn more.

 

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FOR MORE INFORMATION

Trent Scott | Vice President of Corporate Strategy | 615.515.5534 | tscott@tnelectric.org

 

Co-op herbicide use

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May 2017 CommKit

The following resources are available for use in May.

Safety Month

  • Media Release – customize this and distribute to local media on or around May 1.
  • Talking points – Use these tips and schedule drive-time interviews for radio stations in your service area.

Other Resources

Social Media

Posts for May

  • May 1 – May is electrical safety month. Follow these tips to stay safe. [post media release above on your website and link to it]
  • May 2 – It’s planting time. Follow these tips to stay safe on the farm this season. [link to http://www.tnelectric.org/2017/03/22/stay-safe-farm-summer/]
  • May 4 – Last year, [CO-OP INITIALS] employees presented electrical safety programs to more than [##] children and adults. [post photo of safety presentation or link to information on scheduling]
  • May 9 – Washington Youth Tour starts a month from today. This year, [CO-OP INITIALS] will take [NUMBER] young people to Washington, D.C. [post photo from 2016]
  • May 11 – On May 11, 1935, FDR created the Rural Electric Administration to help bring electricity to rural areas. [post photo of FDR]
  • May 15 – [Post information and link to co-op surge protection program]
  • May 17 – Remember: “H2O? Heck no!” Keep liquids far away from plugs and outlets to avoid shock hazards. #ElectricalSafetyMonth #PlugIntoSafety [Insert graphic]
  • May 18 – It’s National No Dirty Dishes Day. Follow these tips for selecting efficient dishwashers and other appliances. [link: https://energy.gov/energysaver/kitchen-appliances]
  • May 22 – Overloaded outlets? You’re playing with fire! Multioutlet converters are no substitute for needed electrical upgrades. #ElectricalSafetyMonth [Insert graphic]
  • May 23 – Be the brightest bulb in the box. Avoid bulbs that exceed the recommended wattage for you fixture. #ElectricalSafetyMonth #PlugIntoSafety [Insert graphic]
  • May 24 – Don’t dig yourself an early grave. Dial 811 to avoid hitting underground utility lines. #PlugIntoSafety #ElectricalSafetyMonth [Insert graphic]
  • May 25 – Here’s one test you can’t afford to fail. Check and change smoke alarm batteries regularly. #ElectricalSafetyMonth #PlugIntoSafety [Insert graphic]
  • May 29 – Happy Memorial Day! We honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to keep our country safe. [post photo of local veteran’s memorial or flag in front of co-op office.]

Stay safe this summer with these electric safety tips from [Co-op Name]

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Stay safe this summer with these electric safety tips from [Co-op Name]

[CO-OP HEADQUARTERS CITY] – May is National Electric Safety Month, and [CO-OP NAME] is using the opportunity to remind everyone to be safe around electricity.

“Electricity provides the benefits and conveniences that make modern life possible,” says [CO-OP CEO NAME, POSITION] of [CO-OP NAME]. “What you don’t know or choose to ignore about electrical safety could seriously injure or kill you or someone you love.”

[CO-OP NAME] offers these tips to keep you and your family safe this summer:

  • Keep people and pets away from damaged power lines and other electrical equipment. Don’t touch anything in contact with downed lines such as a car, tree, fence or clothesline.
  • Don’t climb trees, fly kites, remote-control airplanes or drones; or release balloons near power lines. If you get something stuck on a power line, call [CO-OP NAME] or 911 and stay away!
  • Keep a safe distance from overhead power lines when working with ladders or installing objects such as antennas or gutters on your home.
  • If a power line falls on your car, stay inside the vehicle. Call or ask someone to call 911, then [CO-OP NAME] at [CO-OP EMERGENCY NUMBER]. If you must exit the car, open the door and jump free of the car so that your body clears the vehicle before touching the ground. Once you clear the car, shuffle away using small steps, keeping both feet on the ground, until you are at least 50 feet away.
  • All electrical work should be performed by a licensed electrician.
  • Use GFCI-protected outlets in kitchens and bathrooms. Water and electricity do not mix.
  • Routinely check cords, outlets, switches and appliances for signs of damage. Immediately stop using damaged electrical devices and have them replaced or repaired.
  • Do not overload outlets with too many devices or appliances.
  • Never run extension cords under rugs or carpets.
  • When replacing bulbs, always follow recommended wattage guidelines.
  • Test smoke alarms once a month, and replace batteries once a year.
  • Don’t throw water on an electrical fire. Use an approved fire extinguisher.

You can find additional safety tips and information on [CO-OP NAME]’s website at [URL] or at everydaysafe.org.

[CO-OP NAME] is a consumer-owned, not-for-profit electric utility that serves more than [METER COUNT] meters in [COUNTIES SERVED]. Learn more about [CO-OP NAME] at [URL].

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FOR MORE INFORMATION

[CO-OP MEDIA CONTACT INFORMATION]

Youth Leadership Summit

LOCAL YOUNG LEADERS LEARN ABOUT GOVERNMENT
DURING CO-OP EVENT IN NASHVILLE

NASHVILLE – [HIGH SCHOOL NAME] student [NAME] and [HIGH SCHOOL NAME] student [NAME] were in Nashville March 13-15 for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association’s annual Youth Leadership Summit. The juniors were chosen and sponsored by [CO-OP NAME].

Sen. Jim Tracy on Tuesday, March 14, greeted delegates attending the three-day leadership and government workshop. Tracy welcomed the young leaders to the Senate Chamber of the Tennessee State Capitol where Alan Whittington, assistant chief clerk of the Senate, explained the process required to pass legislation. Students had the opportunity to debate and vote on a mock bill.

Reps. Mike Bell and John Lee Clemmons joined Sen. Tracy for a town hall meeting with attendees. The three discussed the legislative process and answered questions posed by summit attendees. Delegates then had the opportunity to listen in on debate in House and Senate meetings in Legislative Plaza.

In addition to a hands-on look at state government, delegates to the event learned team-building and problem-solving skills and developed a better understanding of their local electric cooperatives.

[INCLUDE A QUOTE FROM ONE OF YOUR STUDENTS OR USE THE FOLLOWING] “I have learned a lot about the Senate and the House of Representatives and how laws are passed,” says  Sarah Shoate, a junior from Adamsville High School attending the Youth Leadership Summit. “I’m really grateful for the opportunity to come here and improve my leadership skills. I’m grateful for Pickwick Electric Cooperative. My co-op really does a lot to make sure that leaders of tomorrow get the opportunities they deserve.”

Delegates to the Youth Leadership Summit are encouraged to be leaders and use their talents to improve rural Tennessee. “Local electric co-ops, school officials and guidance counselors chose these deserving students to attend the summit based on their interests in government and strong leadership abilities,” says Todd Blocker, vice president of member relations for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association and director of the Youth Leadership Summit. “They will be the next generation of leaders in rural Tennessee, and we want to prepare them for the challenges and opportunities they will face.”

“These students will soon be our community leaders — and electric cooperative member-owners,” says [CO-OP LEADER NAME, TITLE]. “We want them to share our passion for rural [REGION, COUNTY, COMMUNITY…], so it is an honor for [CO-OP NAME] help prepare them for the opportunities that are ahead. The future of our rural communities depends on a new generation of strong leaders like these.”

[CO-OP BOILERPLATE]

The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association provides legislative and communication support for Tennessee’s 23 electric cooperatives and publishes The Tennessee Magazine, the state’s most widely circulated periodical. Visit tnelectric.org or tnmagazine.org to learn more.

 

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FOR MORE INFORMATION
[CO-OP MEDIA CONTACT INFORMATION]
Trent Scott | Vice President of Strategy | 731.608.1519 | tscott@tnelectric.org

 

Youth Leadership Summit media release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LOCAL YOUNG LEADERS LEARN ABOUT GOVERNMENT
DURING CO-OP EVENT IN NASHVILLE

NASHVILLE – [HIGH SCHOOL NAME] student [NAME] and [HIGH SCHOOL NAME] student [NAME] were in Nashville March 13-15 for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association’s annual Youth Leadership Summit. The juniors were chosen and sponsored by [CO-OP NAME].

Sen. Jim Tracy on Tuesday, March 14, greeted delegates attending the three-day leadership and government workshop. Tracy welcomed the young leaders to the Senate Chamber of the Tennessee State Capitol where Alan Whittington, assistant chief clerk of the Senate, explained the process required to pass legislation. Students had the opportunity to debate and vote on a mock bill.

Reps. Mike Bell and John Lee Clemmons joined Sen. Tracy for a town hall meeting with attendees. The three discussed the legislative process and answered questions posed by summit attendees. Delegates then had the opportunity to listen in on debate in House and Senate meetings in Legislative Plaza.

In addition to a hands-on look at state government, delegates to the event learned team-building and problem-solving skills and developed a better understanding of their local electric cooperatives.

[INCLUDE A QUOTE FROM ONE OF YOUR STUDENTS OR USE THE FOLLOWING] “I have learned a lot about the Senate and the House of Representatives and how laws are passed,” says  Sarah Shoate, a junior from Adamsville High School attending the Youth Leadership Summit. “I’m really grateful for the opportunity to come here and improve my leadership skills. I’m grateful for Pickwick Electric Cooperative. My co-op really does a lot to make sure that leaders of tomorrow get the opportunities they deserve.”

Delegates to the Youth Leadership Summit are encouraged to be leaders and use their talents to improve rural Tennessee. “Local electric co-ops, school officials and guidance counselors chose these deserving students to attend the summit based on their interests in government and strong leadership abilities,” says Todd Blocker, vice president of member relations for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association and director of the Youth Leadership Summit. “They will be the next generation of leaders in rural Tennessee, and we want to prepare them for the challenges and opportunities they will face.”

“These students will soon be our community leaders — and electric cooperative member-owners,” says [CO-OP LEADER NAME, TITLE]. “We want them to share our passion for rural [REGION, COUNTY, COMMUNITY…], so it is an honor for [CO-OP NAME] help prepare them for the opportunities that are ahead. The future of our rural communities depends on a new generation of strong leaders like these.”

 

[CO-OP BOILERPLATE]

The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association provides legislative and communication support for Tennessee’s 23 electric cooperatives and publishes The Tennessee Magazine, the state’s most widely circulated periodical. Visit tnelectric.org or tnmagazine.org to learn more.

 

#  #  #

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

[CO-OP MEDIA CONTACT INFORMATION]

Trent Scott | Vice President of Strategy | 731.608.1519 | tscott@tnelectric.org

 

Broadband Act passes subcommittee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Co-ops applaud House Business and Utilities Subcommittee for passage of Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act

NASHVILLE – Members of the House Business and Utilities Subcommittee today passed the Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act (H.B. 0529) on [a X to X/unanimous vote]. The legislation now moves on to the full committee for consideration on [DATE].

“The Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act is an important step to expand access to high-speed internet in rural Tennessee,” says David Callis, executive vice president and general manager for the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “This legislation will not only create new service providers in areas with the greatest need for high-speed internet, but it will also create jobs and improve access to education and healthcare.”

“We thank Rep. David Hawk for his sponsorship and the committee for supporting this legislation and rural Tennessee.”

The Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act removes restrictions that currently prevent electric cooperatives from providing retail internet access. More than 800,000 Tennesseans, many of which live in areas served by electric co-ops, do not have access to high-speed internet.

The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association provides legislative and communication support for Tennessee’s 23 electric cooperatives and publishes The Tennessee Magazine, the state’s most widely circulated periodical. Visit tnelectric.org or tnmagazine.org to learn more.

 

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FOR MORE INFORMATION

Trent Scott | Vice President of Strategy | 615.515.5534 | tscott@tnelectric.org

Rural broadband discussed during electric co-op day on the hill

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Rural broadband discussed during
electric co-op day on the hill

NASHVILLE – Governor Bill Haslam welcomed a group from [CO-OP NAME] to Nashville on Tuesday, Jan. 30. [DIRECTOR NAMES] and [CO-OP STAFF NAMES AND TITLES] were among more than 200 electric co-op leaders attending the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association’s Legislative Conference.

“I’m really glad you are here today. If you have an interest, it matters that you show up and represent that interest,” sais Haslam. “The people who don’t engage on key issues are the people who don’t get their voices heard. There’s nothing like showing up in person.”

Conference attendees met with legislators on Capitol Hill to help them better understand electric cooperatives and the issues that impact rural and suburban Tennessee.

The event came just days after Gov. Haslam announced the Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act which would lift regulations that currently prevent electric cooperatives from providing retail broadband service.

“There are about 800,000 Tennesseans who don’t have broadband, and its primarily in rural areas,” said Haslam. “We’ve had a long discussion on Capitol Hill about how to address that. Our proposal uses you – folks who are already in the community, who have those relationships.”

[LOCAL CO-OP POSITION ON BROADBAND WITH MANAGER QUOTE]

“Electric cooperatives have deep roots in the communities we serve,” says David Callis, CEO of the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “Our day on the hill is an opportunity to help lawmakers better understand the issues that matter to rural and suburban Tennesseans.”

“Decisions made in Nashville can have serious consequences for our co-op, our members and the communities we serve,” says [CO-OP LEADER, TITLE].  “We have a responsibility to our members to see that their voice is heard.” Attendees reminded legislators that co-ops are not-for-profit, consumer-owned and -regulated private businesses that impact rural and suburban Tennessee in many ways.

[CO-OP BOILERPLATE]

The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association provides legislative and communication support for Tennessee’s 23 electric cooperatives and publishes The Tennessee Magazine, the state’s most widely circulated periodical. Visit tnelectric.org or tnmagazine.org to learn more.

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FOR MORE INFORMATION

[CO-OP MEDIA CONTACT INFORMATION]

Trent Scott | Vice President of Strategy | 615.515.5534 | tscott@tnelectric.org

Annual Meeting toolkit

TECA is developing resources to help co-ops spread the word about your annual meeting. The zip files below contain fully editable Quark documents.

Annual Report

Advertisements

Collateral

Media Releases

  • Annual meeting announcement
  • Election announcement
  • Election results
  • Annual meeting summary