Chairman Michael Brelage called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. and Secretary Brian Scheidler kept minutes of the meeting.
All members of the board were present. Also present was DCREMC CEO Brett Abplanalp and DCREMC staff members Eric Busch, Crystal Greathouse and Jeanne Loechle. Several members were present and were all given a copy of Policy 2-7, Members’ Access to Board Meetings.
Upon motion by Dale Wernke, seconded by Jason Barnhorst, and carried, the agenda of the meeting was approved by unanimous vote.
Upon motion by Steve AmRhein, seconded by Dale Wernke, and carried, the minutes for the June 25, 2020, board meeting were approved after small changes.
Member Jack (Jay) Hatton requested to speak regarding members’ rights to service upgrades and costs for upgrades. He spoke of his own experience and asked about policies. CEO Brett Abplanalp explained the Line Extension, Service Upgrade and Line Relocation policies and procedures.
Marvin Narwold spoke on behalf of Narwold Dairy regarding the installation and cost of his three-phase service from 2014. He asked for an explanation of his itemized bill. After some discussion it was determined this conversation would be moved outside of the board meeting.
Eric Busch gave the financial update. The financials were reviewed as presented on Call To Order. For the month of June 2020, margins were at $234,478 compared to a budget of $30,508. The variance to budget was primarily due to expenses being under budget for the month. Overall YTD, margins are at $623,605 compared to a budget of $494,306
Brett Abplanalp gave the CEO report which included a capital credits virtual town hall meeting, Breakfast with Brett, interviews with facilitators for strategic planning, the list of projects completed, risk management review and one-on-one meetings with employees.
The June special board meeting regarding the cost of service study was discussed to confirm that directors had an opportunity to get questions answered.
It was recommended that Policy 4-1, Check Signing and Debit Authorization, be updated to change Bookkeeper to Accountant. Upon motion made by Dale Wernke, seconded by Jeff Lawrence, and carried, the update will be made.
Policy 4-4, Safety Deposit Box – no questions or changes were made.
The IEC Director Compensation Study was reviewed. The annual cost per board member for DCREMC is roughly $4,000 less than the average. The board will discuss this further next month as well as review Policy 1-8, Director’s Fees and Expenses.
Educational – Brett Abplanalp shared a video and article regarding best practices for Board Meeting Minutes. Discussion occurred regarding the level of detail to include in the board minutes.
Jason Barnhorst reported on director training, Co-op Bylaws, he attended in early July.
Brian Scheidler, Eric Busch and Crystal Greathouse gave the Hometown Energy Report. There was a net income of $140,000 in 2019 with a distribution of $67,500. The rate for the 2020-21 heating season was set at $1.499 per gallon.
The Hoosier Energy board report was given by Jason Barnhorst. He recommended all members contact their congressmen regarding the legislation on RUS debt which could significantly help the REMC.
The IEC report was in the board documents for all to read.
Brett Abplanalp reported on the Hoosier Data Center report.
Brett Abplanalp reported on the Q2 Risk Management Plan updates. There was also discussion on “phishing” and ransomware.
Upon motion by Jason Barnhorst, seconded by Brian Scheidler, and carried, the meeting was adjourned at 8:15 p.m. to executive session.