TALKING POINTS

Move over for utility workers

 

In 2011 the state’s Move Over law was revised to not only include police, firefighters and other first responders, but utility workers as well.

  • Lineworkers have a dangerous job. They often work high above the ground near energized lines. Their work demands their full concentration. Distractions can be terribly dangerous.
  • Motorists pose a significant threat to utility workers. Each year we hear stories of linemen who are injured or even killed as a result of being struck by cars. We routinely see drivers passing through work zones at high rates of speed, often distracted by phones and other devices.
  • The Move Over Law requires motorists to slow down and move over when possible. On a four lane road, if safety and traffic conditions allow, a driver approaching a utility vehicle with flashing lights should move into the far lane. On a two lane road or when changing lanes is not possible, a driver should reduce their speed.

[CO-OP NAME]’s lineworkers do an important job for our community. Each day they get up, put on their boots, and go make sure the lights come on. Help us keep them safe.

Visit moveovertennesee.org to learn more.

Existing Users Log In
   

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Co-op leaders visit D.C. lawmakers

[CO-OP HEADQUARTERS CITY] – Leaders from [CO-OP NAME] visited with U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker and [REP. CONGRESSMAN NAME OR REPS. NAME AND NAME] in Washington, D.C., during the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Legislative Conference on Tuesday and Wednesday, April 25 and 26. Joining more than 65 co-op members from across the state, co-op representatives discussed energy supply, rural infrastructure, broadband, tax policy and other important issues with Tennessee’s congressional delegation.

“The decisions made in Washington, D.C., often have a direct impact on our co-op and our members,” says [CO-OP DIRECTOR NAME], a director with [CO-OP NAME]. “Infrastructure and energy are critical to our rural and suburban communities, and it is important to ensure that legislators understand our issues.”

Energy Secretary Rick Perry addressed a group of more than 2,100 co-op leaders from across the country attending the conference. Perry hailed electric cooperatives for delivering affordable, reliable electricity to rural America and encouraged them to advocate on their challenges, especially grid security. “We have the greatest electric grid in the world,” Perry said, “and we need to keep it that way.”

“From energy and economic development to broadband and rural commerce, co-ops have a significant impact on Tennessee’s rural communities,” says David Callis, executive vice president of the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “The decisions made in D.C. matter, and it is important for co-ops to be engaged. I appreciate the co-op leaders from across the state who joined us on Capitol Hill to tell the co-op story.”

[LOCAL CO-OP BOILERPLATE]

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.

#  #  #

Contact:

[LOCAL CO-OP CONTACT INFO]

Trent Scott | Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association
tscott@tnelectric.org | 731.608.1519

EMBARGOED UNTIL BILL SIGNATURE

Co-ops respond to Gov. Haslam’s signature
on Broadband Accessibility Act Passes

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam today signed the Tennessee Broadband Accessibility Act. The bill creates grant funding and limits regulations to allow state’s private, member-owned electric cooperatives to provide high-speed internet service to co-op members. David Callis, executive vice president and general manager of the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association made the following statement.

“Access to high-speed internet is critical to Tennessee’s rural communities, and we appreciate the faith that Gov. Haslam and the General Assembly have placed in the electric co-ops. Gov. Haslam’s signature today means that our work is just beginning. Co-ops have an obligation to our consumer-owners to proceed with caution, but we are excited about the opportunities created by the Broadband Accessibility Act.”

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.

 

#  #  #

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

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

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.

 

#  #  #

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

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

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.

 

#  #  #

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

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

 

Existing Users Log In
   

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 https://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.]

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].

#  #  #

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

[CO-OP MEDIA CONTACT INFORMATION]

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